UAE sports body snap up all semis tickets
All tickets to the 2019 AFC Asian Cup semi-final clash between Qatar and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have reportedly been bought by the UAE sports council.
It was announced that UAE sports council head, Prince Nahyan bin Zayed, had purchased and ordered all of the tickets reserved for the game to be distributed to ‘loyal Emirati fans’ for free.
The move will effectively block fans of the Qatari team from cheering on the sidelines of the highly-anticipated showdown on Tuesday, 10:00pm at the Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium.
In an interview with The New Arab, Middle East football analyst Uri Levy said that the act was probably in response to Omani fans cheering for Qatar in the game against Saudi Arabia.
“Around 1,000 Omani fans have supported Qatar, producing great images of support for the team.
“This act is no different from the series of unwelcoming gestures towards the Qatari team – starting with preventing Qatari fans from entering the UAE to Saudi and Emirati fans booing the Qatari national anthem during the match against Saudi Arabia.
“The Qatari success in this tournament has caused major discomfort among Emiratis and Saudis,” said Levy.
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