HUNDREDS of football fans were left angry and disappointed after being caught up in an FA Cup ticket fiasco at Farnborough on Tuesday.
They queued for more than four hours in a biting wind, only to be told that the tickets - priced £26.50 - for next week's fourth round tie with cup holders Arsenal had been sold.
With only 1,500 tickets on general sale, the disappointed supporters were annoyed that no-one had told those towards the back of the queue that they were wasting their time.
The frustrated fans also accused the club of being caught on the hop as it had only one person on duty to sell the tickets, with the result that the queue moved at a snail's pace.
"It was a public relations disaster," said Lawrence Alexander, who queued from 9am to just before 1pm, only to be told all the tickets had gone.
"I'm not at all impressed at the way the club handled the sale. They've let a lot of people down."
He claimed that the queue, which stretched almost as far as the eye could see, hardly moved during the time he was standing in it. "I was amazed how orderly and patient everyone was," he said.
"It was only when we were told all the tickets had gone that people started asking questions."
Mr Alexander added that he was also unhappy that the club had arranged for a future ticket allocation to be sold today (Thursday) through Ticketmaster.
The tickets will cost £27 each, plus a £3 booking fee and handling charge.
Reluctantly, however, he intends to try to buy a ticket through the agency. "I count myself as a true supporter because I go to most home games," he said. "I don't want to miss the biggest match in the club's history."
No-one from the club was available for comment as the Star went to press on Wednesday.