ISTANBUL (AP) -The empty seats that have greeted teams at the Under-20 World Cup in Turkey are a disappointment to FIFA.
Jim Boyce, the chairman of the FIFA Organizing Committee for the tournament, said Monday that he was unhappy with the turnout that has averaged only 4,828 spectators for the first 12 matches at the six sites.
If the trend continues, it would be the lowest attendance ever for an Under-20 World Cup dating back to 1977 - the next lowest being an average of 9,667 in the Netherlands in 2005. Several sites, including Istanbul, were far below the average with the opening France-Ghana match only attracting 2,800 fans in a 50,000-seat stadium. ...
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Kicking Back Comments: To heck with FIFA's expectations, I do wonder what is driving this behavior. Only about 5000 spectators have turned up for the forst 12 match on average, and the opening match in a 50000 seat stadium did not even have 3000 spectators!
What's going on?
It's too bad too as the U-20 is a great place for players and referees to really sharpen up in preparation for tournaments like the Olympics and World Cup. It often provides glimpses of the future of many stars.