Manchester City have announced they will pay travel costs for supporters attending the Champions League final against Chelsea in Porto.
The final will take place in the Portuguese city on May 29, having been moved from Istanbul last week after Turkey was placed on the UK’s travel ‘red list’, due to an increase in coronavirus cases.
Discussions over staging the match between two Premier League sides in the UK fell down after UEFA were unable to secure quarantine exemptions for staff members.
Portugal emerged as a viable alternative, given it is on the UK’s ‘green list’, with non-essential travel permitted without quarantine requirements upon return, meaning 6,000 supporters from each club are able to buy tickets at the reduced capacity Estadio do Dragao.
However, fans wishing to attend the game still face prohibitive costs concerning flights and required PCR COVID-19 tests.
In a scheme funded by owner Sheikh Mansour, those able to buy tickets to see whether Pep Guardiola’s side can add a first Champions League crown to their Premier League and EFL Cup successes will now have a chunk of that cost offset.
“Pep and the team have had such a remarkable season and their reaching the Champions League final after a very challenging year represents a truly historic moment for the club,” Mansour said in a club statement.
“It is therefore incredibly important that as many fans as possible have the opportunity to attend this special game. Especially those who have supported Manchester City through good and bad times for so many years.”
Fights and transfers for match-going fans will be covered under the initiative, with the process for buying tickets set to be announced later on Tuesday.