Danish UEFA Champions League participant FC Copenhagen has instituted a policy by which fans whose names do not sound Danish will not be able to buy tickets to group-stage matches except in the away section. Copenhagen has been drawn against Galatasaray, Juventus and Real Madrid in Group B.
Fans who bought their tickets through certain websites received an email from the club saying that their tickets had been nullified.
A report in Ekstra Bladet quoted Copenhagen club secretary Daniel Rommedahl as saying in an email to fans whose tickets were canceled that the decision could be reversed on a case-by-case basis (please excuse the poor translation):
Safety is always our main concern at events in [Parken Stadium]. And therefore, we make every effort to ensure that possible fans of the teams that [visit] FC Copenhagen only have access to the away section during the [match]. And tickets for the section to be purchased through the [away] clubs that we have visited. Therefore, we will cancel the ticket via billetlugen.dk which directly indicate that bought seats elsewhere in the stadium the away team’s fans.
If a dialogue with the customer indicates otherwise, so the acquisition will obviously be approved. We apologize for any inconvenience this could lead to some of our supporters, but it is a necessary measure [of] safety during the [match, based on] UEFA’s rules and [Parken Stadium’s] usual procedures.
It is standard practice to separate home and away fans, usually requiring away fans to purchase tickets through the visiting club. Some clubs have become more vigilant of intermingling of fans, in light of recent crowd violence during UEFA competitions.
UEFA has so far not responded to Copenhagen’s policy. ESPN sports commentator Keith Olbermann gave the club second place in his “World’s Worst Person in Sports” section on Wednesday: