Manchester United’s FA Youth Cup final against Nottingham Forest SMASHES competition’s attendance record with more than 70,000 tickets sold for Old Trafford finale – with Harry Maguire among packed-out crowd
More than 70,000 fans descended on Old Trafford on Wednesday night to watch the FA Youth Cup final between Manchester United and Nottingham Forest – smashing the attendance record for the competition.
United confirmed on Tuesday afternoon that 63,500 tickets – priced at just £1 – had been sold for the showpiece game with all receipts going to the club’s charity foundation. That has since risen north of 70,000.
The crowd pictured inside Old Trafford far exceeds the previous Youth Cup attendance record of 38,187, set for the first leg between Arsenal and United in March 2007.
Forest, playing in their first-ever Youth Cup final, found themselves backed by 6,000 fans at Old Trafford.
The crowd at Wednesday’s final also surpasses any Premier League attendance away from Manchester United.
Old Trafford, a 75,000 capacity ground, tops the charts, with Tottenham Hotspur’s new ground, which has 62,850 seats, the next largest.
Among the crowd was United’s first team captain Harry Maguire, who took his place in the director’s box.
Prior to the final, United’s Head of Academy, Nick Cox, hailed the impact of exposing these burgeoning stars to large crowds.
He told the club website: ‘If you turn up and watch the FA Youth Cup final, you are contributing to their development.
‘If we can have a ferocious atmosphere and passionate fans, it will help the boys cope that little bit better when they get the chance to play in front of 75,000.
‘The purpose of the FA Youth Cup is to create amazing learning opportunities.
‘The boys put some pressure on themselves to win, the history of the competition at this club puts a little bit of pressure on them as well, and you play in front of crowds, have that little bit of pressure and have to deal with whatever circumstances cup competitions throw at you.’