UEFA considers new stadium ban idea

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Published: Wednesday 22nd October 2014 by The News Editor

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UEFA may order clubs to allow only women and children into European matches as punishment for racist behaviour by fans after deciding to take no action against CSKA Moscow for apparently having fans inside the closed stadium against Manchester City.

Some 200 to 300 people supporting CSKA were inside the stadium on Tuesday night but UEFA is satisfied the rules were followed.

UEFA president Michel Platini will, however, put forward the ‘women and children only’ plan for discussion by European football’s chiefs after a successful use of the scheme in Turkey in 2011, where Fenerbahce imposed the rule after a series of hooliganism incidents.

UEFA chief of press Pedro Pinto told Press Association Sport: “The president has suggested an idea where instead of having empty stadiums only women and children are allowed into the match.

“This is just an idea at this stage but Mr Platini is open to discussing it inside UEFA to see if it is better overall for fans and for the image of football.

“The women and children would not have to pay for tickets so the club would still incur a financial penalty.

“This system was used in Turkey to deal with unruly behaviour by fans with great success.”

Manchester City defender Vincent Kompany claimed it was “unacceptable'” his side had no fans at their 2-2 Champions League draw in Moscow while the home side appeared to have up to 300 fans backing them at a game that was officially played behind closed doors at the Khimki Arena.

Kompany said: “You say ‘no fans’ then all of a sudden you turn up and basically the only team that hasn’t got fans is Man City. So who’s getting punished? Who is being done for racism? Man City or Moscow?”

Pinto said the ‘supporters’ were guests of sponsors, staff or parents of ball boys who are not covered by the stadium ban, which was imposed for racist behaviour by fans.

He added: “The game was still played behind closed doors – we have sponsors that get tickets to every game even when sanctions are involved, as do staff and the parents of the ball boys, and that was the situation yesterday.

“As far as the corporate guests are concerned we cannot control what they wear or if they take scarves or flags but there was no inappropriate behaviour or banners.

“Less than three per cent of the stadium was used and the club do not get gate receipts and enjoy the product that is the Champions League – they were still penalised.”

Meanwhile, UEFA has charged BATE Borisov with racist behaviour of fans towards Shakhtar Donetsk player Luiz Adriano, which saw the referee suspend the game.

The Belarus club has issued an apology for their fans’ “shameful” behaviour. It said: “We consider such behaviour to be completely barbaric and idiotic. We hope that it will never be repeated in our stadium.”

Published: Wednesday 22nd October 2014 by The News Editor

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