Mystery as complete unused set of Euro 96 tickets - including three Sheffield games - found in suitcase

The complete set of tickets is set to go up for auction. (Photo: Hansons Auctioneers/PA).
The complete set of tickets is set to go up for auction. (Photo: Hansons Auctioneers/PA).
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A set of unused tickets for every match of the Euro 96 football tournament - including three matches in Sheffield - has been found in an old suitcase.

The set of tickets includes one for the final - which was won by Germany - plus all England's matches and the three fixtures held at Sheffield Wednesday's Hillsborough Stadium 22 years ago.

The tickets have a face value of £1,680 - but mystery surrounds why they were never used.

The bundle was found among some old cigarette cards in Stoke-on-Trent and the tickets are nows set to go on auction in Derbyshire next month.

The owner, who wants to remain anonymous, said he took his grandfather's cards for valuation when he came across the tickets, which had been inside a suitcase his mother had given him 10 years ago.

"It's a complete mystery," he said. "My mum, who died last year at the age of 90, certainly wasn't interested in football.

Davor Suker scores in Croatia's 3-0 win over Denmark at Euro 96 at Hillsborough.

Davor Suker scores in Croatia's 3-0 win over Denmark at Euro 96 at Hillsborough.

"I have no idea how they ended up in the suitcase. I don't think my mum was a ticket tout!"

He believes she might have picked up the tickets at a car boot sale without realising what she had.

An estimate of £100-£150 has placed on the set, which is to be sold on 23 May in Etwall.

Alistair Lofley, football valuer at Hansons Auctioneers, said the owner of the tickets would not have been able to make every game, as some were played at the same time, and speculated the tickets might have been competition prizes.

Denmark fans outside Hillsborough during Euro 96.

Denmark fans outside Hillsborough during Euro 96.

"For any diehard football fan, to think of these tickets going begging is hard to swallow," he said.

Euro 96 was the first major football tournament to be held in England since the 1966 World Cup and saw sixteen teams play in eight English cities, including Sheffield.

Hillsborough played host to a 1-1 draw between Denmark and Portugal, a 3-0 win for Croatia over Denmark and Denmark's 3-0 defeat of Turkey.

The most memorable of the lot was surely Croatia’s 3-0 win over defending champions Denmark, where star striker Daver Suker netted twice, including a brilliant chip to beat Peter Schmeichel in front of a packed Hillsborough crowd.

England were beaten on penalties by Germany, at Wembley in the semi final.