The Week Ahead - Wembley Champions League Ticket Sales; Nigeria to Rise Up Rankings

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Wembley stages the final on May 25 (Getty)
(WFI) A tranche of 9,000 tickets for the 2013 UEFA Champions League final at Wembley Stadium went on sale today at 12.00CET. Available on UEFA.com, sales run until March 15.

UEFA said tickets are not being sold on a first-come, first-served basis; a lottery will determine the allocation of tickets once the sales period has finished.

A total of 59,000 tickets of the 86,000 stadium capacity are available to fans and the general public, with the two finalist teams receiving 25,000 tickets each. Only 9,000 tickets are being put on sale to fans worldwide.

The remaining tickets are allocated to the local organising committee, national associations, commercial partners and broadcasters, and to serve the corporate hospitality programme.

UEFA has responded to criticism of costly tickets for the Champions League final at Wembley in 2011 by making Category 4 tickets, previously only accessible to the two finalist clubs, available to the general public priced at £60 each.

Category 1 tickets cost £330; Category 2 are £230 and Category 3, £140.

The game is on Saturday May 25.

Ronaldo Spices Up Madrid v Man Utd Clash

Real Madrid’s clash with Manchester United FC is the tie of the Champions League last 16.

Wednesday’s first leg at the Bernabeu will see Ronaldo face his old club for the first time since he joined the Spanish giants in the summer of 2009.

Ronaldo spent six seasons with United between 2003 and 2009, scoring 118 goals in 292 games, winning one UEFA Champions League and three Premier League titles, as well as one FA Cup and two League Cups.

Real Madrid have won three of the clubs' four previous encounters.

Blatter Back in Zurich

FIFA president Sepp Blatter returns from his Africa tour, including the Africa Cup of Nations, for business in Zurich this week.

On his agenda are committee meetings from Tuesday to Thursday. He’ll be involved in discussions with the organising committees for the FIFA U-20 World Cup in Turkey and U-17 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates. Blatter is also expected to attend FIFA’s Committee for Women's Football and the Associations Committee.

On Feb. 14, he is set to discuss FIFA’s anti-doping strategy with the World Anti-Doping Agency president. John Fahey is part of a WADA delegation visiting FIFA headquarters.

Nigeria On the Rise

Africa Cup of Nations winners Nigeria and runners-up Burkina Faso will be the biggest movers in the FIFA global rankings published on Thursday.

Nigeria, currently placed 52, beat the west African side (92nd) 1-0 in Sunday's final at the National Stadium in Johannesburg.

It was the Super Eagles first continental trophy since 1994.


By INSIDER’s Mark Bisson

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