Greek Soccer Fans Required to Use Digital ID App for Ticket Purchases

football hooligans mitsotakis

Soccer fans in Greece will soon be required to use a state-run digital identification app on their cell phones in order to purchase tickets for games. This new measure is being implemented after a two-month ban on supporters due to security concerns, which was put in place following a violent fan riot in Athens where a police officer was shot with a flare and later died from his injurie

Greek Sports Minister Yiannis Vroutsis presented the details of the new ticketing rules to a parliamentary committee, confirming that stadiums will reopen on February 13. In an interview with state-run television, the minister emphasized the need to identify individuals entering stadiums, and explained that the mobile app will automatically cross-check a person's ID with their ticket. This means that anyone without a cell phone will not be allowed entry into the stadium.

Soccer-related violence has been a longstanding issue in Greece, and in recent years, overseas referees were brought in to address allegations of bias during major games. With the new ticket system, which will resemble electronic boarding passes used at airports, all 14 top-division clubs in Greece will be required to install it by April 9. This will enable authorities to have access to supporters' personal information, such as their name, phone number, home address, and assigned seat.

In addition to the digital ID app, other measures are being implemented by the center-right government to combat soccer-related violence. This includes the mandatory installation of surveillance cameras at all stadiums by March 6. Spot bans of supporters involved in violent incidents will also be imposed, along with the creation of a national registry for members of soccer supporters' clubs. Furthermore, new rules will prohibit stadium entry for minors under the age of 15, unless they are accompanied by a parent or guardian.

It should be noted that non-Greek nationals who wish to attend games but are not registered with the digital ID program will have separate arrangements made for them. This ensures that the new regulations do not pose an obstacle for international fans. The state-run ID application for cell phones was introduced in 2022, as part of the government's efforts to address the ongoing concerns regarding soccer-related violence in Greece.

Copyright Greekcitytimes 2024