EHF EURO 2024 on course for world record attendance
The handball hype during the recent World Championship has also ensured a boom in fans' excitement for EHF EURO 2024 in Germany.
Before this year's Men's World Championship, around 18,000 tickets for the games in Düsseldorf's 50,000 seater MERKUR SPIEL-ARENA had been sold.
On the final day of the World Championship, Mark Schober, Chairman of
the Board of the German Handball Association, announced in Stockholm that 40,000 tickets had now been sold for this matchday - and therefore no more tickets can be sold at the moment.
“We have created a good basis. We currently have no more tickets for the opening day on sale because tickets for the participating teams will be held back," said Schober.
More tickets will be put on sale a few days after the EHF EURO 2024 draw in May. Currently, only VIP tickets remain for the matches in Düsseldorf and for those of hosts Germany's group matches in Berlin.
Thus, the EHF is well on the way to fulfilling the dream of a new attendance world record for handball, at what will be the first men's EHF EURO on German soil.
"I hope that the German team will play in a sold-out stadium in front of more than 50,000 fans on 10 January 2024 and that we will experience a historic sporting event," said Schober. The previous spectator world record for a handball match was set in 2014 in the Frankfurt football arena with 44,189 fans at the game Rhein-Neckar Löwen vs HSV Hamburg.
"I'm really looking forward to be part of such a match in Düsseldorf," said German national coach Alfred Gislason, speaking after winning the 5/6 placement match against Norway 28:24 on Sunday.
Pre-sales are also running very well for the other preliminary round venues of the EHF EURO 2024; Berlin, Munich and Mannheim, as Schober underlined, “At the moment only VIP Tickets are available for the German preliminary round matches in Berlin, for the other groups already more than 1000 tickets each were sold.”
More than 3000 fans from Iceland are expected for their preliminary round matches in Munich, while in Mannheim they are counting on many Croatian spectators who live in the metropolitan region to be in attendance.
After the draw in May, the next pre-sales period will start. In addition to the group tickets that are already available, day tickets will also go on sale, “I'm not worried that the halls will remain empty. The German fans also stay for other teams' games, as the 2019 World Championship clearly showed when more than 14,000 fans were in the LANXESS Arena in Cologne for matches of the Presidents’ Cup," says Schober.
The LANXESS Arena, the long-time home of the EHF FINAL4, will play a major role in another premier handball final weekend; on 28 January 2024, the new European champion will be crowned in the cathedral city.
"We want to organise a tournament that has never existed in this form, especially in regard to the number of spectators, but also the many side events such as the training of 1000 children's handball coaches, a handball business forum or elementary school campaign days," says the CEO of the German Handball Federation.