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Brescia and Lecce’s ticketing practices deemed ‘unfair’

The Italian antitrust authority has concluded a consumer rights investigation into the “unfair” ticketing practices of Serie B football clubs Brescia Calcio and Unione Sportiva Lecce.

The l’Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato (AGCM) found there were “vexatious” contract terms in the sale of season tickets for both clubs, which competed in Serie A during the 2019-20 season before being relegated this season.

The probe confirmed that there was “unfairness of some clauses” contained in the contractual conditions relating to refunds of season tickets, stating that “the right of consumers is not recognised”.

The investigation follows the failure of the clubs to remove clauses that exclude consumer rights to obtain a refund when stadia are closed or matches postponed. The watchdog confirmed that conditions also exempt clubs from paying damages in cases where the postponement of a match has been the direct responsibility of the club.

The AGCM explained that Brescia has modified its clauses and will adopt them once the sale of tickets is possible again.

It also noted that Lecce has “prepared a new formulation of the clauses… However, the judgement of unfairness remains for the clauses that exclude the reimbursement of part of the subscription in the event of unexpected impossibility of the service.”

The Antitrust Authority has ordered that an extract of the “unfair” measures be published on the homepage of the websites of the teams for 30 consecutive days.

The news follows a November ruling by the AGCM that found the ticketing practices of nine Serie A clubs to be “unfair.” Those teams were Atalanta, Cagliari, Genoa, Inter, Lazio, Milan, Juventus, Rome and Udinese.

Image: Freddyballo/CC BY-SA 3.0/Edited for size

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