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By ESPN Staff

Cup final ticket allocation disappoints West Ham

West Ham have described their 23,500 ticket allocation for the FA Cup final against Liverpool as a 'major disappointment'.

The club are hopeful the allocation will ensure every club bond-holder and season-ticket holder can get to the Millennium Stadium for West Ham's first FA Cup final in 26 years.

But it is 'unlikely' any tickets will be available to club members for the May 13 final.

'We have been advised that we will receive an initial allocation of 23,500 tickets, possibly increasing to a maximum of 24,000,' the club said in a statement.

'The size of allocation is a major disappointment following the allocation of almost 34,000 for each of our two recent play-off finals.

'We recognise that many of our loyal supporters will be unable to obtain tickets for this important game in the club's history.

'The ticket allocation is roughly the same for each of the two finalists and we must accept that, for FA Cup finals, many of the tickets are sold directly by the FA instead of through the participating clubs.'

The combined allocation awarded by the Football Association to West Ham and Liverpool would account for around 48,000 tickets. The Millennium Stadium's capacity is 74,500.

Tickets cost between £25 and £90 but are also subject to a £3.50 booking fee from Ticketmaster and a £4.90 charge for special delivery, which is compulsory after the Millennium Stadium decreed no duplicate or replacement tickets will be issued.

'The preferred option of the West Ham United ticket office selling our allocation was simply impractical for mailing reasons,' the club explained.

'Therefore the club has decided, once again, to utilise the services of Ticketmaster to sell all cup final tickets to supporters.

'It will be noted that Ticketmaster service charges are considerably higher than the club. We can assure supporters that the club earns nothing from these charges and has negotiated with Ticketmaster to minimise them.'