English Premier League football club Arsenal is set to offer non-league club Lincoln City the maximum allocation of 9,000 away tickets for next month’s FA Cup quarter-final at Emirates Stadium.
Despite averaging only 4,000 fans for home games in the National League, the interest in the Lincoln City tie will be exceptionally high given that the club has reached the last eight for the first time in 130 years, becoming the first non-league team to do so since 1914.
Meanwhile, League One club Millwall has requested an increase in the 2,800-ticket allocation for its match against Tottenham Hotspur.
The number offered is significantly lower than the maximum allocation for away fans for FA Cup matches, which is normally 15 per cent of a stadium’s capacity.
However, White Hart Lane is operating at a reduced capacity of about 31,500 while work on a new stadium is taking place and the FA has given the club dispensation to reduce the allocation to 13 per cent — just over 4,000.
Following talks with the FA, broadcasters and the local Safety Advisory Group, which comprises of representatives from police, fire brigade, council and the club itself, the club settled on the 2,800 figure for the tie.
Millwall chief executive Steve Kavanagh argues that 4,000 tickets would provide less of a safety risk, partly to prevent fans trying to buy seats among home supporters.
Kavanagh said: “To me, it wouldn’t be safe to not offer that number. It’s easier to control and manage fans within the confine of the grounds rather than having Millwall supporters trying to buy tickets in the Tottenham end.
“We want Millwall fans in an area together where they can enjoy the game in a safe environment.”
In 2001, Tottenham met Millwall in a pre-season friendly in which violence between the two sets of fans ensued before and after the game.