MOSCOW: Soccer fans requested more than 500,000 tickets for next year's World Cup finals in Russia on the first day of sales, FIFA said on Friday.
World soccer's ruling body said in a statement that Russian fans had made the most requests in the first 24 hours of sales, "followed by their Mexican, Argentinian, Brazilian, Chinese, U.S., Colombian, German and English counterparts".
More than 50,000 tickets have been requested for the final, which will be held at Moscow's newly-renovated Luzhniki stadium on July 15.
Just under 40,000 tickets were requested for the tournament's opening match, which will also be held at Luzhniki.
Ticket sales for the 2018 World Cup, made through FIFA's website, are divided into two phases, followed by last-minute sales.
Prices range from US$105 for the cheapest seats at group stage matches to US$1,100 for the most expensive seats at the final.
Ticket holders will be required to obtain a personalised fan-ID, which allows Russian authorities to screen all fans hoping to attend matches.
World Cup matches will be held in 12 venues spread across 11 Russian cities, including Moscow, St Petersburg, Sochi and Kazan.
(Reporting by Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber, editing by Ed Osmond)