Manchester United have confirmed they’ll pay fans who bought a ticket for tonight’s away match against LASK Linz to the tune of £350 each.
Thousands of Red Devils supporters had already booked their travel and accommodation costs for the Europa League last-16 first-leg in Austria before it was decided the match should be played in front of a handful of supporters in an attempt to battle the Coronavirus.
The Austrian government has restricted tonight’s ‘attendance’ at the Linz Stadion to no more than 500 people and almost 700 United fans who bought tickets through the club will be entitled to the fixed sum of £350 to ensure they don’t end up too out of pocket.
A statement from United, via the Manchester Evening News, read: “The payment is being made in recognition of the late stage at which the decision was made to play behind closed doors, due to a directive from the Austrian government, and the fact that, for many supporters, their costs will be non-refundable.
“Payments will be made automatically to the cards that were used by supporters to purchase their tickets, within the next five days. We can confirm that the sum will be paid to all supporters who purchased match tickets through the club, irrespective of whether they travelled.
“This was considered the most practical approach because of the bureaucratic burden that would have been involved in a narrower eligibility criteria, and because of the fact that even those who travelled ultimately could not attend the game which was the purpose of their trip.
“This one-off decision reflects the unique circumstances around the LASK game; fans are urged to closely follow the latest developments and UK government advice regarding coronavirus when planning travel to any games in the future.
“The initiative reflects our appreciation of the phenomenal support we receive from our travelling supporters.”
As you’ll probably be all too aware, there are already talks ongoing behind the scenes at UEFA to possibly suspend or even indefinitely postpone this season’s Europa League, so tonight’s match could be academic anyway.
But, still, it’s a pretty nice gesture from the United hierarchy, don’t you think?
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