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Monday, October 15, 2012
Boro 'disappointed' by lack of tickets

Kristan Heneage

Middlesbrough have described themselves as 'extremely disappointed' at Sunderland's decision to restrict the number of tickets made available to away fans ahead of this month's Capital One Cup tie.

Under competition rules, visiting sides are entitled to 15% of a stadium's capacity when it comes to allocation.

However, the Black Cats have given their Teeside visitors just 2,800 tickets for their 49,000-capacity stadium, citing safety and evidence of previous bad behaviour by visiting fans.

"We are extremely disappointed with the decision," Middlesbrough chief executive Neil Bausor told the Journal.

Bausor also said that the club's aim was to provide as many fans as possible the chance to be at the game - revealing that Middlesbrough even offered to provide assistance in managing their supporters.

"We believe we made a strong representation to Sunderland, together with the Football League, for a much bigger allocation and we also offered to work together with Sunderland to assist with the management of our supporters," he said.

"We understand safety of fans in sports grounds is paramount and Sunderland know their own stadium better than anyone.

"We had hoped Sunderland, after reviewing their risk assessment, would have made a larger allocation available to our fans, but they concluded after that review they could not safely manage more than 2,800 Boro fans in the Stadium of Light."

"Our aim has been to give as many of our supporters as possible the opportunity to see this eagerly anticipated cup-tie.

"However, the league has had to accept the request of Sunderland to give us a reduced allocation."

Middlesbrough have also been informed that the remainder of their 15% entitlement will not be made available to home fans - instead those seats will remain empty.

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