Wales 'fighting' for as many fans as possible to be at World Cup

  • Report by Richard Morgan

The boss of the Welsh FA says he's "fighting" for as many fans as possible to be at this year's World Cup, after Wales qualified for the tournament for the first time since 1958.

Noel Mooney, the Chief Executive of the Football Association of Wales, told ITV Cymru Wales that the organisation faced "an uphill battle" to get tickets and accommodation for fans, as Wales were the 32nd of 32 teams to qualify for the showpiece tournament. 

He said: "That does give us challenges because it means that the other 31 other countries have had first dibs on things like hotels for the fans and flights for supporters.

"So that gives us an uphill battle. But that said we're working furiously with FIFA and all of the agencies we work with."

Mooney said the FAW would only be allocated 5% of tickets for each game by FIFA.

That means there could be as few as 2,000 Welsh fans at the 40,000 seat Ahmad Bin Ali stadium near Doha where Rob Page's men are playing their Group B matches against USA, Iran and England in November.

He said the governing body would be doing their best to ensure loyal fans get priority.

"That's going to put us in a difficult situation", he added.

"We have a 'Red Wall' membership which is very important to us. Because you try and have a system where the people who go to most matches home and away are the best rewarded."

On its website, FIFA says a third and final sales window for tickets will be opening before the tournament on a "first come, first served" basis. 

Meanwhile Mooney said the FAW remained "in dialogue" with world football's governing body over the exact number of tickets that will be made available to Wales supporters.

He added: "We're fighting and trying to get more angles on how we can get more tickets.

"Once we have that final position we'll put out official information by Friday. 

"So anyone who wants to follow Cymru out in Qatar will get their information by the end of the week."