The decision to play the match behind closed doors was made by UEFA and completes a two-game stadium ban ordered after a swastika was marked on the pitch ahead of a 2016 UEFA European Championship qualifier against Italy.
The FA had been exploring all options to secure a number of tickets for our members to attend this match. However, the FA takes the safety and security of its members extremely seriously and following consultations with the police and the UKFPU we agreed that it would be unsafe for fans to attend the fixture – either through The FA delegation of tickets or through other means. For these reasons we strongly advise against any of our members travelling for the fixture.
We appreciate that those members who have already made their travel and/or accommodation plans will be naturally disappointed by this decision but we hope that you understand the reasons for doing so.
Don't agree with this at all! Our flights to Spain are from Croatia so advising not to travel to Croatia is ridiculous! Obviously we all have a spare few £100 to cover such ridiculous punitive measures at know fault of our fans!
Hope the me me me brigade are happy!!!!! Would be safer in the ground than in the local bars.
Spineless but fortunately for me I gt a refund on my flights due to time changes
Said it before, thank you FA for letting UEFA treat the fans like this. It should have been highlighted at the draw that the match was to be behind closed doors. The FA should make it clear to UEFA, no fans no England team. Pull out of this shambles of a tournament or continue to treat your fans like cash cows?
This Nations League is becoming farcical with respect to how England fans are being treated. Croatia game behind closed doors and the venue for Spain still not confirmed by the FA. We have probably the largest travelling support and treated like this. Spain and Croatia fans will have there plans for travelling to Wembley sorted already.
Suggest the fa delegation of tickets should also be 0. How is it safe for you? Maybe you should feel the same as the fans!
Oh well,will be watching it in a bar in Zagreb cheers UEFA
Amazes me how they can say "don't travel to Croatia because it's unsafe" but then they openly want you to go to Russia?
Very disappointing decision and we will still be travelling.
What a spineless stance. It was Uefa's rank error to not state game "behind closed doors" on fixture schedule. But the FA even worse as you have completely failed to support those who booked - especially the many travelling to Spain via Croatia (remember, only FA fixture requirements caused this away double-header). Then, after months of silence, you issue a statement so weak that it can't be used in travel insurance claims. Which means everyone will still travel, but spineless FA can point to this statement if any trouble. Complete jokers!
This is a shambles of a decision. The Foreign Office aren’t suggesting we shouldn’t travel, so I’ve a mind to travel anyway. I guess the FA fat cats and Police who get all their travel free (well paid for by us) will be attending.
You need to stand down as Russia is likely to be far more problematic. I’m going to look into the legal options here.
In the interim, I suggest people send complaints to the Sports Minister email@example.com
Absolutely ludicrous decision and statement !! "Safety and security" - how would the risk of attending be any different to watching a match there normally ?
Like many, I have travel and accomodation booked and will be going. We will just have to all watch in a bar !
Given the fixture schedule error was Uefa's mistake, FA should have ensured Croatia's one match ban was delayed until start of Euro 2020 qualifying.
“Unsafe for fans to attend the fixture.....for these reasons we strongly advise against any of our members travelling for this fixture.”
Why? What would be unsafe about members attending a fixture to which Croatian fans are banned?
Will the players be safe? What about english press? Is it safe for them to attend? Should they not travel either?
It’s nothing to do with safety. It’s to do with you not having a clue how to allocate FA delegation tickets to members and so you’ve decided not to do it. Why don’t you say that? Instead you give this nonsense reason that it’s to do with “safety” with no explanation whatsoever.
Complete and utter shambles from both UEFA and The FA. Don't buy "safety and security" for a moment. And what about the Spain venue...?! Time to pull out of this nonsense tournament... organise some friendlies if fixtures are needed.
The blame for this fiasco lies clearly with UEFA, who should have "confirmed" the closed doors ruling at the time the fixture list was issued or, better, when the draw was made. Some blame also lies with the Croatian FA who presumably knew of this ban but did not mention it to the English FA.
Our own FA are to be commended for lobbying behind the scenes to have English fans allowed in to the fixture. They are also to be commended for considering the possibility of inducting some fans into the FA official delegation so that at least some could watch the match. However, they have shown a lack of courage in not following through with this plan and not facing down the top cappers who argued that if they couldn't go then nobody should go.
The advice from the police and the UKFPU that fans shouldn't travel is ludicrous. The whole crux of this debacle is that fans have already paid for flights on a non-refundable basis: not only flights to Croatia but also in many cases onward travel to Spain. Do they really think we are going to write off this money ? There will be several hundred fans in Zagreb regardless of their "advice".
Finally, independently of this farce, the FA should take UEFA on one side and explain to them what an inconsiderate decision it is to have 2 away fixtures on the same weekend. With only 4 fixtures over 6 dates for Leagues A and B, I'm sure they could have arranged things so that any double headers were 1 home and 1 away.