FIFA Says World Cup Tickets With 300% Mark-Up Being Sold On Black Market
About 130 companies "are being investigated for selling World Cup tickets on the black market," with FIFA claiming that some are being offered with a 300% mark-up, according to the AFP. Match Services AG, the FIFA-sanctioned commercial outlet, "confirmed reports in Brazil's media that companies and operators were under investigation" for offering unauthorized deals. Match Services indicated that it "was aware of companies offering packages on the black market at vastly marked-up prices." The Estado de Sao Paulo daily quoted its legal counsel, Imran Patel, as saying, "We are seeing a huge black market with prices of up to 300 percent above face value." Tickets for next year's World Cup "are available solely via the FIFA website" (AFP, 12/16).
WORLD CUP LEGACY: EUROSPORT reported Brazilian American football team Cuiaba Arsenal "hope to share in the spoils bequeathed to their city by a rival code." Paulo Cesar, a 32-year-old lawyer, "could not be happier." His team is to benefit from the World Cup when it switches homes from its "modest ground to Cuiaba's World Cup stadium, the Arena Pantanal." Founded in '06, the club has been Brazilian national champions twice, in '10 and '12. Six players "have gone on to play college football" in the U.S. and the club regularly attracts crowds of around 4,500 to its entirely amateur matches. Cesar, who plays on offense for the team, agreed that "there is an irony that one of the legacies of the World Cup will be to boost American Football in the city and the state of Mato Grosso" (EUROSPORT, 12/15).