Thomas Cook collapse hits fans booked to follow English clubs in Europe

September 24 – Hundreds of fans are awaiting news on whether packages for upcoming games will be valid following the collapse this week of the Thomas Cook travel company.

The debt-laden firm that was crippled by high interest rates in its loans, went into liquidation on Monday having failed to secure £250 million needed to keep it afloat.

A number of Premier League clubs use Thomas Cook Sport for Champions League and Europa League match packages.  Those clubs are now working on contingency plans as they face European away games in the coming weeks. Home domestic fixtures are also affected in some cases.

Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham supporters are among those facing potential travel disruption over pre-booked packages.

United advertise home match breaks, stadium tours and Europe away matches with Thomas Cook on their website. They have Europa League games away to AZ Alkmaar on October 3, Partizan Belgrade on October 24 and Astana, of Kazakhstan, on November 28.

A United statement said Thomas Cook  “have pre-sold a small number of tickets and hospitality for some home matches this season, along with travel packages to two upcoming UEFA Europa League away games.

“As soon as we were aware of their potential insolvency, we started to work through contingency plans and we will endeavour to contact affected Manchester United fans who had booked direct via Thomas Cook.”

Thomas Cook also has an arrangement with Liverpool to sell 360 matchday hospitality packages to fans for every home match. The company is one of a number used by Liverpool to also arrange travel for supporters.

A Liverpool statement read: “We are currently assessing the impact of Thomas Cook ceasing trading and the impact for those supporters who have purchased packages from Thomas Cook. Once we have those details from Thomas Cook we will update supporters.”

Chelsea, who also use Thomas Cook as their travel partners, said they would pay for alternative travel arrangements for fans who had booked for the Champions League game against Lille in France on 2 October.

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