England’s World Cup quarter-final against Sweden is one of the most anticipated matches in recent memory for fans of the national team as the chance to reach the last four of the tournament for the first time since 1990 becomes a very real possibility.
But in what is something of a surprise, around 10,000 tickets remain unsold for the quarter-final, exemplifying just how many English fans have stayed away from Russia.
As of three hours before kick-off in Samara, fewer than 3,000 tickets had been told to England supporters, with more Swedes expected to attend the game.
This will not be such an unfamiliar feeling for Gareth Southgate’s squad though, having been hugely outnumbered by Colombian supporters during last Tuesday’s penalty shootout victory over the South American side.
To put the small number of England supporters that will attend the match in comparison, there will be more expected at Nottingham Castle to watch a screening of the game.
A number of supporters increased their interest in travelling to the World Cup for Saturday afternoon’s match, with Skyscanner reporting a 189 per cent increase in flight searches to Samara and a 165 per cent rise in the number of page views on the Foreign Office’s “entering and leaving Russia” pages.
One problem for England fans though is the rising prices to attend the World Cup, with travel, accommodation and matchday access set to rise into the thousands in order to see part of England’s World Cup campaign.