London 2012: Olympic football tickets release date to be agreed

Millennium stadium
Image caption The first game of the Olympic football tournament kicks off at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium

Olympic organisers have yet to decide on a date for the sale of the remaining football tickets for the 2012 Games as online systems are still being tested.

The football ticket sales will precede the final batch of sales of one million tickets for other Olympic sports, which was delayed from April to early May.

A Locog spokesman said they were in the final stages of testing systems that previously caused technical problems.

High demand earlier in the sales process crashed the ticket website.

The London 2012 spokesman told the BBC: "We want to make sure it's as good as it can be.

"Once testing is complete and we get the all clear then things will move quite quickly."

Technical glitches

Organisers had wanted to start selling the 1.5m remaining tickets for the football tournament to coincide with the draw at Wembley on Tuesday .

But testing of the Ticketmaster system to avoid a repeat of technical glitches that plagued earlier rounds is ongoing.

On Tuesday Locog chairman Seb Coe said they would be able to announce the date in the next week, with a sale in early May.

He said: "I'm not going to artificially hurry this process. I have to be absolutely sure that my teams tell me they're ready. This will be as soon as we possibly can."

Image caption David Beckham could be one of three over-age picks for the Team GB squad

The remaining batch of tickets, which had been held back by Locog while they finalised venue seating, plus returns and 1.5 million Paralympics tickets, had been due to go on sale in April.

This was then put back until after the football draw and organisers have struggled to come up with a date because of clashes with a three-day security command exercise which ends on Friday, the London mayoral election on 3 May and test events on 5 and 6 May.

When the batch of one million tickets do go on sale, some 20,000 people who were mistakenly told they had tickets will be given a 24-hour head start in the sale.

In a further five-day window, the one million people who applied but missed out in earlier ticket rounds will be given the chance to buy on a first come, first served basis.

If there are any tickets left at the end of that period they may go on general sale, but it is considered unlikely.

Team GB's women footballers will play New Zealand in the opening event of the Olympics at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff on 25 July.

David Beckham could be selected as one of three over-age picks for the men's football squad which makes its first appearance at Old Trafford on 26 July.

Large screens

Some of the most sought-after tickets for the Olympics are to be sold at special ticket booths in the weeks leading up to the Games.

London 2012 organisers have also said they would be selling general admission Olympic Park tickets at Games-time but the cost and number of tickets that will allow entry into the site in east London has not been decided.

People without tickets for sports events will be able to watch the action on large screens around the Park.

Locog has resolved to raise a quarter of its £2bn budget through ticket sales.

The Games organisers have come in for heavy criticism for refusing to be more transparent about the ticketing process , but insist they will provide a complete breakdown once the process is completed - although they have refused to comment on when this will be.

Locog has said 75% of the 8.8 million Olympic tickets would go on general sale to the British public , but it has not clarified how many were made available for showcase events.

More than half of the 1.9 million British people who applied for tickets in the first public ballot opted for the evening athletics session on 5 August , which includes the men's 100m final and the women's 400m final. More than two million applied for seats at the opening ceremony.

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