South Africans will get at least 120,000 free tickets for the first round of the 2010 World Cup their country is hosting, according to FIFA’s secretary-general Jerome Valcke.

“We will give away 120,000 tickets to South Africans for the first round of the World Cup. This will include 40,000 tickets to the workers at the various World Cup stadiums,” disclosed Valcke.

Media reports had earlier suggested that ticket prices for the competition were too expensive as the cheapest was priced at about 35 US dollars in the first round.

Officials said a total of three million tickets will go on sale from February 20, 2009, for the World Cup which will be played between June 11 and July 11, 2010.

850,000 tickets are already up for grabs for the FIFA Confederations Cup fixed for June 2009.

CEO of the local organising Committee for the World Cup, Danny Jordan, also revealed that a “category 4” ticket has been introduced to allow more people to come through the turnstiles during the global soccer showpiece.

“This will be the cheapest ticket ever for both the World Cup and the Confederations Cup,” disclosed Jordan.

“For instance, for the Confederations Cup the price for such a ticket will be 10 US dollars and for the World Cup, 20 dollars at a fixed exchange rate of 7 Rands to a dollar. This is affordable.”

Gate takings from the tournament go to the host country to help offset the cost of staging the event.

AUTHOR: Samm Audu
DATED: 4th December 2008