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Champions League final: Fans’ experiences sought

On Saturday thousands of Manchester City fans descended upon Istanbul to watch their team win the Champions League for the first time – but the organisation around the fixture has been heavily criticised.

Supporters reported a lengthy list of serious organisational issues before and after the game at the Atatürk Olympic Stadium in the outskirts of the Turkish capital, including:

  • Travelling on shuttles for up to three hours without water or toilets.
  • A lack of guidance and minimal travel options post-game, which left elderly fans and those in wheelchairs facing long walks or hailing taxis stuck in traffic jams, which charged up to €200 (£171)
  • Only two concession stands were available for the entire Manchester City end, creating waits for water for up to two hours.
  • Fewer than 20 toilets serving 20,000 people in the fan zones.
  • Fans having to abandon transport and climb over scrubland and “building site” surroundings to make kick-off.


This is the second successive European Cup final that has problems with its organisation – in May 2022 thousands of Liverpool fans were caught up in dangerous overcrowding before their final against Real Madrid at the Stade De France.

Those events in Paris led to a six-month long investigation from an independent panel, including supporter representatives, who reported serious safety failures that could have led to fatalities.

UEFA, the panel reported, bore “primary responsibility” for the chaos before the game and the governing body has since pledged to review its organisational guidelines for major finals and refund Liverpool fans.

This week Football Supporters Europe, the umbrella organisation representing fans at European level, are calling for supporters to get in touch and share their experiences – this will then form the basis of a report which will be taken directly to UEFA.

“All results will be anonymised,” FSE said. “We will evaluate the information provided later and publish a report based on the findings to offer a clear picture of the situation within the UEFA region and to liaise with the football authorities on possible improvements.”

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Funding partners

  • The Football Association
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  • Gamble Aware
  • Co-operatives UK
  • FSE
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  • Living Wage Foundation
  • Pledgeball