Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland fan in Euro 2016 ticket ad ends up with none

By Nevin Farrell

A Northern Ireland fan whose photograph was used in a campaign urging people to go to Euro 2016 has himself missed out on tickets.

Stuart Killen (33), from Newtownards, was pictured cheering on his heroes whilst wearing a green and white jester hat.

He was the poster boy and his happy face was the perfect spur for fans to make ticket applications.

But his smile was quickly turned upside down when Stuart fell foul of the tickets application farce which has hit hundreds of Northern Ireland fans.

Loyal fans like Stuart thought they would be priority cases in the allocation process for the finals in France. He has travelled the globe supporting Northern Ireland for two decades and has built up loyalty points which were supposed to guarantee him tickets.

Stuart told the Belfast Telegraph: "There has been no reaction from the IFA despite numerous calls and emails to them.

"The only reply was about the extra tickets for the Poland game and more or less blaming Uefa for not following their requests to use the points basis.

"I have received no tickets yet."

Asked if, after the way he was treated, he would allow football chiefs to use his face in any future campaigns, he said: "No, highly unlikely after this fiasco.

"Neither the IFA or Uefa had permission to use my photo so I had no idea about appearing on their adverts until I got my email from the IFA with my picture."

He added: "I'm chairman of the Ards GAWA Supporters Club. I had the most points from the whole club while some members had little to zero points and they received tickets for all three games. I'm delighted for our members who got but bitterly disappointed at missing out myself."

Belfast Telegraph