It’s been a long time since Australia’s
football fans have seen a grand final in the domestic competition that’s not
only sold out days ahead of the big match – Sydney FC vs Central Coast
Mariners – but has finally given ticket scalpers something to work with.
Early on Tuesday
afternoon, the Football Federation Australia announced all tickets for the
culmination of the inaugural A-League season, at Aussie Stadium in Sydney, were sold.
Today, the FFA warned that holders of scalped tickets could have them
rendered invalid and that it was monitoring eBay after The Tele reported that desperate fans had even paid “$305 a ticket”. That was a little
misleading. The Tele explained lower down that it was for “one pair of premium seats”.
Sydney’s top-rating breakfast announcer Alan Jones
told listeners “here we go again,” before explaining he was puzzled why the FFA
would want to go to any lengths to identify scalped tickets. He said if someone
wants a ticket bad enough and is willing to pay then that shouldn’t be a
problem, before agreeing with one of his talkback callers that the FFA should
be chuffed with the idea of someone wanting to pay inflated cost to attend one
of its events.
In any case, those fans
who miss out on a seat at Sunday’s match will be well-catered for. Star City casino, where Sydney FC will have its post
match celebration or wake, will be showing the match live on a big screen. Live
coverage of the grand final will also be broadcast at Central Coast Stadium, with
the pre-game preview starting at 4pm and kick-off at 5pm.
Sportsbet has Sydney FC as favourites to
become the inaugural A-League champions, paying $2.05, with Central Coast fetching
$3.45 and $3.30 for a draw.
Meanwhile, with the A-League about to wind
down and the Socceroos’ World Cup campaign winding up, fans may be surprised to
see a report surfacing today – unconfirmed of course – that after completing
his Australian commitments in July, coach Guus Hiddink will become supremo of
the Russian football team.