The 2018 World Cup qualifier between India and Turkmenistan at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi on March 29, will only have 22,000 seats after the galleries were closed according to FIFA directions. The stadium, which was the home venue of Kerala Blasters, had hosted 60,000 fans during the ISL.
India, who are ranked 160th in the World, lie at the bottom of Group D that comprises Iran, Turkmenistan, Guam and Oman. Although the team is out of the running for the qualification for the 2018 Russia World Cup qualifiers, the 1-0 win against Guam back in November has given the team hopes of making it to the next round of the 2019 Asian Cup qualifiers. India will travel to Iran on March 24, before hosting Turkmenistan on March 29 at Kochi in the qualifiers, which will also act as the qualifiers for the Asian Cup.
But the support for the home team at Kochi has been cut down as per the directions from FIFA. Even though 22,000 seats will be available for the match, only 10,000 tickets are expected to go on sale.
“And after more than 7,000 complimentary tickets are given away, a little more than 10,000 tickets will be available for sale,” said P. Anil Kumar, the General Secretary of the Kerala Football Association at the Nehru Stadium here on Saturday evening, reported the Hindu.
The tickets for the match have been priced at Rs.500 (VIP entry), Rs.200 and Rs.100 and are scheduled to go on sale shortly.