Champions League Final fan view: ‘It’s great to be here but the treatment of supporters has been a shambles’

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 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)

It is fantastic to have the chance to follow Chelsea abroad once more — and especially for a Champions League Final — but the behaviour of Uefa and the two clubs to get here has, once again, shown that fans are taken for granted.

If I am honest, I think the treatment of supporters has been a shambles.

Manchester City have been much better in the way they have communicated with fans and offered to pay for travel completely for those travelling out on the day, something Chelsea didn't do.

But the communication from both clubs and Uefa over the venue change, and the slow updates, has been a shambles, it has not been clear enough.

Uefa came out of the Super League debacle in a positive light because they weren't seen as the enemies then, but that has changed after all this.

It has been clear that this final is not being run for the supporters. It made more sense to play the game at Wembley. It seemed the main reason why that didn't happen was because Uefa didn't want their delegates and sponsors to suffer. Fans were not prioritised there. We were regarded as second place.

I was lucky to secure cheaper flights after I took a punt and booked travel before Porto was officially confirmed as the host city, but other fans were not so fortunate. The price of flights just sky-rocketed as soon as Porto was announced, so for a lot of people it has been a nightmare.

It has been a struggle trying to work out the Covid testing requirements and, for people travelling in general, the Government has made it quite confusing.

It has cost me £150 for the three Covid tests I needed — one before I flew, one here and one once I am back in England. All in, the trip has cost me £500.

It is a lot of money and effort, but for a Champions League Final it is always worth it. I didn't go to Munich in 2012 and felt I had to do anything I could to get out here this time.

Alex Burke is a member of Chelsea supporters' group We Are The Shed.

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