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SBD Global/May 3, 2013/International FootballPrint All
Bayern Munich has "some of the cheapest season tickets anywhere in the world," with an adult ticket in the standing section at the Allianz Arena costing just £104 ($161M), according to Adam Shergold of the London DAILY MAIL. By contrast, the cheapest season ticket at EPL Arsenal is £985 ($1,528) and £725 ($1,125) at Liverpool. Even the least expensive Premier League season ticket during the '12-13 season is £255 ($396) at Wigan. It is Bayern's "philosophy towards pricing that is so refreshing." Bayern President Uli Hoeneß on looking after the fans that has gone viral on social media: "We do not think the fans are like cows, who you milk. Football has got to be for everybody. That's the biggest difference between us and England" (DAILY MAIL, 5/2).
Chilean side CDA Pumas board of directors is accusing Antofagasta Mayor Karen Rojo of demanding 1,000 free tickets for the team's game against University of Chile this weekend, according to EMOL. The problem occurred when Rojo requested 1,000 tickets as a gift, which the club's managers denied. Rojo then demanded CDA President Osciel Guzmán sell the team or evaluate the continued use of the regional stadium (EMOL, 5/2).
The Spanish Football League (LFP) will investigate La Liga side Deportivo La Coruña's 4-0 victory at Levante on April 13 on suspicion of match-fixing, according to FOOTBALL ESPAÑA. The LFP and Player's Association (AFE) met this week and "were reported as discussing the issue of the Week 31 match." The LFP and AFE have decided to send all possible information on to the Anti-corruption Office to investigate any signs of match-fixing and to take appropriate action (FOOTBALL ESPAÑA, 5/2).
BARKERO APOLOGIZES: The London TELEGRAPH reported at halftime of the game, Levante midfielder Javier Barkero was reported by local media to have accused some of his teammates "of not trying, sparking a confrontation in the dressing room." On Wednesday, Barkero said, "I have asked for forgiveness from everyone and especially my four colleagues whom I have wrongly accused." An LFP spokesperson said, "Any game where there is suspicion will be investigated with all the tools available to the LFP" (TELEGRAPH, 5/2).
ZELJKO KALAC SUSPICIOUS: FOOTBALL ITALIA reported former Italian football club Perugia goalkeeper Zeljko Kalac "has suggested the relegation play-off between Perugia and Fiorentina in 2004 'was fixed.'" Kalac made the allegations during an interview with Sports Fan Clubhouse. Kalac: "I got relegated with Perugia. We had to play a playoff match against Fiorentina. Obviously Fiorentina is a massive club, Perugia was just a little club. It'd be fair to say it was scandalous, the way we got knocked out. I'm going to say the game was fixed, because we could not cross the halfway line without the ref pulling the game up. That was the first time I'd seen something like that, I couldn't believe it. I'm talking two matches, so 180 minutes of football, and we had no chance to win" (FOOTBALL ITALIA, 5/2).
After falling to Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League semifinals, Real Madrid coach José Mourinho alluded to the money he has generated with three straight semifinal appearances, according to Diego Torres of EL PAIS. Mourinho "perceives himself as something much bigger [than an ordinary coach]: an administrator, a strategic analyst, an immensely profitable creative for a football club." Upon feeling that the press had questioned his success, "instead of justifying himself with football arguments, or by listing titles, he exhibited something similar to an account balance." Mourinho: "Now, Madrid has recovered its position at the head of the Champions League with three consecutive semifinals. There have been three economically fantastic seasons for the club because it has earned a lot of money in the Champions League without having to pay extra because we haven't beat the competition. From this point of view of prestige, the team has recovered." Mourinho "who is paid to earn trophies, considered not having won the Champions League, his principal objective, to in some way be an economic success." The idea of Mourinho being thrifty "seems contradictory." In '10, Madrid had to compensate Inter with the biggest transfer fee ever paid for a coach, €18M. In total, "until now the Mourinho operation has cost more than €60M ($78.4)" (EL PAIS, 5/1).
MEETING IN THE MIDDLE: In London, Martin Lipton reported Mourinho has been told "he will have to accept working under Technical Director Michael Emenalo" if he wants to return to Chelsea. He "raised the hopes and expectations of the Blues fans that he was on his way 'home' as he spoke warmly of the enduring 'love' from the Chelsea faithful." But "while the 'Special One' and his advisors have been involved in negotiations with the Chelsea hierarchy for months, his initial demands for 'full control' have been rebuffed." That could still end up sending Mourinho "in the direction of Paris St. Germain, who have also held talks with his agent Jorge Mendes and are likely to bend over backwards to offer the 50-year-old a deal he wants" (DAILY MIRROR, 5/2).
The head of Referee's Department and Inspectorate for the Russian Football Union, Roberto Rosetti, has announced that "he has no plans to invite foreign referee's to adjudicate matches in the Russian Premier League in the foreseeable future." The former Italian official made the statement after the Spartak Moscow chair said that "referees from abroad should be invited to officiate high profile games" (INSIDE WORLD FOOTBALL, 5/2). ... Congolese football club Tout Puissant Mazembe is "slashing ticket prices and hoping to build momentum from an important weekend win" as it seeks to overcome South African side Orlando Pirates in the African Champions League at the weekend (SOWETAN LIVE, 5/2). ... Borussia Dortmund has accumulated €60M ($78.4M) in winnings from this Champions League season. The club will receive at least an additional €6.5M ($8.5M) if it loses in the final on May 25, with a potential reward of €10.5M ($13.7M) for a victory. The same rewards are on the line for Bayern Munich, Dortmund's Champions League final opponent. The €60M-plus the club has earned so far comes from UEFA prize money, marketing and ticket sales (ES, 5/1). ... Former Rangers CEO Charles Green has been fined £2,500 ($3,800) by the Scottish Football Association for "offensive and racist comments" (Scotland DAILY RECORD).