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Soccer News of Tuesday, 8 January 2013

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Slow AFCON ticket sales

The Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations will on Tuesday launch a public awareness campaign in all host cities in a last minute attempt to accelerate ticket sales.

With just 13 days to go before the start of the tournament, organisers of the event are particularly worried about the slow rate of ticket sales in Port Elizabeth and Rustenburg.

Port Elizabeth will host Group B, which is made up of Mali, Niger, DR Congo and Ghana, while Rustenburg will host Group D teams Ivory Coast, Togo, Tunisia and Algeria.

But the likes of Ivory Coast and Ghana, traditional giants in African football, are failing to lure fans to the stadiums.

“Over 300,000 tickets have been distributed for the tournament which includes those taken by the host cities for distribution,” LOC spokesperson Sipho Sithole tells KickOff.com.

“Direct sales to the public are lower than expected but should pick up soon in Rustenburg and Port Elizabeth.”

While Sithole says “there is no direct answer to the cause” of the slow rate of ticket sales, the LOC hopes their planned public awareness drive will attract more people to the stadiums.

“The host cities, working with the LOC, Sport and Recreation, Brand SA, GCIS and CAF social partners will be implementing a massive public awareness programme starting from 8 January at all the host cities to drive ticket sales,” Sithole says.

“Zambia, Angola, Algeria and Morocco have arrived [in South Africa]. With the arrival of these teams, the vibe is beginning to pick up,” Sithole insists.

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