RIO DE JANEIRO - High-quality forged World Cup tickets which are almost impossible to detect have been found in Brazil and many more may be in circulation, officials say.
FIFA marketing chief Thierry Weil told a press conference around 50 people holding the bogus tickets were turned away from Thursday's tournament-opening game between Brazil and Croatia in Sao Paulo.
Weil produced an example of the sophisticated fake tickets discovered, warning fans they were virtually undetectable.
The only way of telling the tickets were forged was the absence of a microchip scanned by stadium officials.
"We have had cases of parents with children who have bought tickets and when they get to the turnstile they are turned away because they discover the tickets are fake," Weil said.
"Quite often they say have bought the ticket from a friend of a friend but the only tickets guaranteed to get you in the stadium are tickets from FIFA.
"The forgeries are almost perfect. The only thing missing is the chip.
"Around 50 like that were discovered in Sao Paulo and we think there must be far more in circulation."