SAO PAULO (AP) — It was a frenzied start to FIFA's attempt to fill the stands for next year's World Cup in Brazil as fans applied Tuesday for more than 1 million tickets in just seven hours.
But it will be some time before they know whether they'll be among those lucky enough to get seats to football's signature event. Applicants won't hear back until October, after FIFA holds a random selection draw on all the requests.
More than 163,000 people requested the tickets online in the first seven hours.
At the end of the first day of sales, the website of football's governing body FIFA showed that there were more ticket applications than the number of seats available in all four price categories for 12 of the 64 matches, including the opener in Sao Paulo and the final at Rio de Janeiro's Maracana Stadium.
Demand was also high in all price categories for the semifinals, and 44 matches had too many requests at least for the cheaper category tickets which are only available for Brazilians.
FIFA said the highest amount of applications so far has come from Brazil, Argentina, the U.S., Chile and England.
"The respective ticket product is already heavily oversubscribed and therefore, at that point in time, the success of the application appears very unlikely," FIFA said of the high demand categories. "There are vastly more ticket applicants seeking tickets than there are tickets presently available for the general public."
Prices for the final will go from $440-$990, although Brazilian fans will pay $165 in the cheaper category. Brazilians over the age of 60, local students and members of some social programs will be allowed to pay about $82 for a ticket. Prices for the opener in Sao Paulo go from $220-$495, with Brazilians paying $80 and discounted tickets costing $40.