Excitement is building for FIFA World Cup finals in Russia next year even nine participants for the biggest event on the global football calendar are yet to be decided.
As the first period of ticket sales concluded on Thursday, FIFA since September 14 had received 3, 496,204 requests. Most of the applications have come from Russia, while international demand accounts for more than 30 per cent. Around 150,000 tickets have been requested for the opening match, for the final the number has gone past 300,000.
The fans had a chance to apply for tickets for every match or for specific ticket products on FIFA.com/tickets during the Random Selection Draw sales period, which ended on Monday.
The tickets will be allocated by a random selection draw process if demand exceeds the number of available tickets. The applicant will get to know about their ticket status by 16 November, when the sales resume.
Between November 16 and November 28, the fans will be able to purchase tickets in real time on FIFA.com/tickets with immediate confirmation of successful application as the tickets will be sold on first-come, first-served basis. Tickets purchased during this phase will be delivered free of charge.
Brazil, Iran, Japan, Mexico, Belgium, Korea Republic, Saudi Arabia, Germany, England, Spain, Nigeria, Costa Rica, Poland, Egypt, Iceland, Serbia, France, Portugal, Panama, Uruguay, Colombia and Argentina have already joined hosts Russia for the finals.
Meanwhile, the fans attending the World Cup will have to apply for a Fan ID, which will be the official identity document issued to fans. The ID and a valid ticket will be required for fans to be able to enter the World Cup stadiums.
The Fan ID will also have additional benefits and services for the fans. These include visa-free entry to the Russian Federation, certain free inter-host city travel and free use of public transport on match days.