Arsenal match in Vietnam in doubt after stadium owners hike fees
The Gunners are due to become the first Premier League to play in the country
Friday 14 June 2013
Organisers of a friendly between Arsenal and Vietnam are facing a battle to ensure the match goes ahead after the owners of the stadium venue hiked their fees for the game.
Arsenal would be the first Premier League team to visit Vietnam and while the country's football federation played down concerns the game could be canceled, they said the price being quoted to use the My Dinh national stadium was too high.
The Vietnam soccer federation has appealed to the government and local media to pressure the owners to lower fees after they demanded 1.5 billion dong ($71,300) - more than seven times the normal price - to stage the much-anticipated July 17 match.
"The price the My Dinh stadium asked for is too unreasonable," Le Hung Dung, vice chairman of the Vietnam Football Federation (VFF), told Reuters on Friday, playing down media reports that the game could be canceled.
Arsenal will be the first top flight English club to visit Vietnam, where soccer is the national sport and attracts a huge following. The North London side will also visit Indonesia and Japan as part of their Asian tour.
Can Van Nghia, director of the 40,000-seat national stadium, said owners were not profiteering from the high-profile game.
"All money is being used to renovate the stadium," he said. "This is a historic game and we have to prepare for that."
Arsenal join Premier League rivals Chelsea, Manchester United and Liverpool in touring Asia next month, playing matches in Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Australia, Hong Kong and Japan, where they have lucrative fan bases.
Latest in Sport
England vs Lithuania: Wayne Rooney rules out repeat of boxing celebration after son Kai repeats it at school and focuses on goalscoring record
Marco Reus becomes Arsenal transfer target to replace Theo Walcott
Paul Scholes: It's amazing Manchester United midfielder Michael Carrick has so few caps for England
New kits for 2015/16: Have the Arsenal, Manchester United, Chelsea, Liverpool and Barcelona strips been leaked?
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao: Zab Judah denies flooring Mayweather during sparring as he prepares for 2 May
- 1 Germanwings crash: Police make 'significant discovery' at home of co-pilot Andreas Lubitz
- 3 Zayn Malik already working on solo material, just days after quitting One Direction
- 4 The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
- 5 #FreeTheNipple: Women in Iceland bare breasts in solidarity with trolled student
Nigel Farage brands LGBT activists 'filth' and 'scum' and accuses them of scaring away his children after they invade his local pub
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
JK Rowling responds to fan tweeting she 'can't see' Dumbledore being gay
Russia threatens Denmark with nuclear weapons if it tries to join Nato defence shield
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Germanwings plane crash live: Andreas Guenter Lubitz intentionally crashed flight 9525 into the Alps in act of mass murder and suicide – latest