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SBD Global/October 10, 2012/International Football

Del Piero's Saturday Home Debut With Sydney FC 'Heading For A Packed House'

Midfielder Alessandro Del Piero's home debut for Sydney FC is "heading for a packed house" with more than 11,000 tickets pre-sold for Saturday night's Week 2 match against Newcastle Jets at Allianz Stadium, according to Ray Gatt of THE AUSTRALIAN. Club officials are "conservatively predicting" a crowd of at least 30,000, as tickets are being sold at the rate of 500-600 a day. Del Piero's presence at Sydney and in the A-League has "captured the imagination of fans" from all over the country. Many have purchased full-season memberships despite living far away and "are expected to turn out" to watch Del Piero's first home game. Sydney FC CEO Tony Pignata said, "There's no reason why we should not have more crowd records broken for the A-League this weekend." The "Del Piero effect was evident" in Week 1, when the Sky Blues' match against Wellington in New Zealand attracted more than 12,000 fans, while the game produced the highest TV ratings for a Phoenix home match (THE AUSTRALIAN, 10/10).
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