The Champions League final between Chelsea and Manchester City has officially been moved from Istanbul to Porto.
UEFA has confirmed that the Estadio do Dragao will now host the all-England final on May 29, after Turkey was placed on the UK’s high-risk ‘red list’ for international travel.
Efforts were made to move the match to Wembley, but the Football Federation was unable to secure quarantine exemptions for thousands of sponsors willing to attend.
As final capacity in Portugal is set to be set, 6,000 tickets will be made available to Chelsea and Man City fans.
The European football governing body said in a statement: “The final was originally scheduled to take place at the Atatürk Olympic Stadium in Istanbul but, following the UK government’s decision to place Turkey on its red list of Covid-19 travel destinations , will organize the final there. would have meant that none of the clubs’ domestic supporters would be able to make it to the match.
“After a year of exclusion from fans in the stadiums, UEFA felt that everything should be done to ensure that the supporters of the two finalist teams could attend.
“UEFA have discussed the transfer of the match to England but, despite exhaustive efforts by the Football Association and the authorities, it has not been possible to secure the necessary exemptions from the UK quarantine provisions.”
Portugal is on the UK’s ‘green list’, meaning supporters won’t need to quarantine when they return from May 17, although they will need to take a Covid PCR test within two days.
This is the second season in a row that Porto will host the event at the expense of Istanbul’s Atatürk Olympic Stadium, with a limited number of fans who will be allowed to take part in the Portuguese top flight’s final round matches later this month – this.
Earlier today, talkSPORT host Alan Brazil angry at UEFA for ruling out Wembley so sponsors could attend, insisting that fans should have been given priority.
He said: “We are not interested in your VIPs and your sponsors, we are interested in two groups of supporters!
“They would gladly go to the game in England without risking anything abroad, jumping on planes.
“Let’s think about the supporters of both teams, for the love of God. Why don’t they have it in England, not in Portugal ?!
“If it’s over in Portugal, the Prime Minister must get involved. It’s a weird year and we have to protect, so why should fans go and leave the country when they’re on both English sides ?!
“I know that there are rules and that UEFA has to take care of its sponsors and the companies that invest a lot of money in the game, the UEFA family, etc., but it certainly is an exception this year.
“If they have to isolate [if the game is in England] so either, these are the rules – we don’t like being stuck at home, we don’t like not being able to go to a pub or a restaurant, we had to put up with it, so why can’t they?
“It makes good sense, not to mention taking care of their own, it makes sense that in this strange time the fans should get more tickets and the game should be played in England and not in Portugal, surely!”