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By ESPN Staff

Cup final fans hit in the pocket

The Football Association has confirmed an increase of almost 22% for the top price tickets for next month's FA Cup final.

After pegging the tickets at £95 since the showpiece occasion returned to Wembley in 2007, anyone buying the most expensive ticket for this season's clash will have to shell out £115. Other tickets will be available at £85 and £65, with the cheapest at £45, which is £5 higher than last term.

With the recession still having a major effect, the FA is bound to come in for criticism, especially as all four semi-finalists must travel down from the north of England for this weekend's semi-finals, a move which Sir Alex Ferguson has claimed could cause "chaos" in the capital, in addition to huge expense.

However, the FA feels the prices still offer good value, in line with most similar events and far cheaper than the Champions League final, which will also be held at Wembley on May 28, two weeks after the FA Cup final.

The clash between either Real Madrid or Barcelona and Manchester United or Schalke will cost £300 for a top-price ticket and £80 for the cheapest.

And, unlike UEFA, the FA prides itself on being a not-for-profit organisation that pours all its surplus income back into the grassroots of the game.

This season, both finalists in the FA Cup final will receive 25,000 tickets with those remaining taken up by members of Club Wembley, organisations affiliated to the FA and volunteers from grassroots football clubs across the country.

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