By Michael Place
RIO DE JANEIRO, Jan. 15 (Xinhua) -- World football's governing body FIFA announced Tuesday it was forced to hold a lottery for the allocation of Confederations Cup tickets due to overwhelming demand.
The first phase of ticket sales for the June 15-30 event in Brazil closed on Tuesday with 399,525 ticket requests from 78 different countries, FIFA said on its website.
"Due to the great demand for the Festival of Champions, a draw will take place for the oversubscribed matches and/or categories to ensure all fans stand an equal chance of receiving their preferred choices," FIFA said.
The city with most tickets requested was Salvador with 93,567, followed by Rio de Janeiro (88,420), Brasilia (68,912), Fortaleza (68,352 Recife (51,518) and Belo Horizonte (28,756).
The most sought-after match has been the tournament opener in Brasilia between Brazil and Japan with 68,912 ticket requests, followed by Italy's duel with Brazil (68,114) in Salvador and the final at Rio's Maracana Stadium (51,388).
"The vast majority of applications came from Brazil followed by USA, Mexico, Spain, Japan, Germany, France, Italy and Argentina," FIFA added.
FIFA said 132,843 tickets had already been sold for the event following the pre-sales credit card phase which ended on November 30. The next sales phase begins on February 15.
The Confederations Cup is seen as an organizational warm-up for the World Cup a year later.
The tournament will comprise FIFA's six continental champions, host nation Brazil and European runner-up Italy, by virtue of the fact European champion Spain also qualifies as the defending World Cup champion.