Football: Fans warned about visas for Moldova

England followers preparing to travel by train to Glenn Hoddle's first match in charge in Moldova this weekend were warned yesterday they must have valid visas before they try to enter the former Soviet state.

About 100 England supporters with tickets for Sunday's game are known to be planning to set off on a two-day train journey, changing trains in the Romanian capital, Bucharest.

The Moldovan authorities had informed the Football Association that supporters with tickets could pick up their visas when they reached the border and then travel on to Kishinev.

However, officials at Lancaster Gate have now been told that unless fans turn up at the border with visas already stamped, they will be denied access. "We were originally told that there wouldn't be a problem, but at the 11th hour we've found out that there could well be one." Steve Double, an FA spokesman, said. "The fans who haven't got visas yet must get one from the Moldovan consulate in Bucharest before boarding the train for Kishinev."

Double added that the FA was doing all it could to help supporters get to the game at the 20,000-capacity Republican Stadium. "We've appealed to the British embassy in Bucharest. If we hadn't, then fans arriving after Friday afternoon simply wouldn't have been able to get their visas," he said.

"The embassy has persuaded the Moldovan consulate to agree to open on Saturday. It will be open from 8am to 7pm local time to deal with visas. We're aware that some fans might already be en route, and won't know about this, and we don't want fans going all that way only to get stranded.

"The embassy has also stuck up posters in English at Bucharest station telling the fans what they have to do, but I must stress that unless supporters have a visa their chances of getting in are remote."

Richard Rufus, the Charlton defender, has become the latest player forced out of the England Under-21 squad for their opening European Championship qualifying match in Moldova on Saturday.

Peter Taylor, the coach, had already lost Nicky Butt, the Manchester United midfielder, Chelsea's Jody Morris and the Queen's Park Rangers striker Kevin Gallen from his chosen squad of 19.

And yesterday, Taylor, who has called up the Everton youngster Michael Branch as striking cover, was forced to rule out the Charlton centre-half. An FA spokesman, Clare Tomlinson, said: "Richard had a scan on his knee and unfortunately he's had to go home. But the good news is we expect Emile Heskey of Leicester to be fit after the treatment he has had on his hamstring injury."

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?