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 Poland : Football league protests Legia stadium fan ban - 06/05/2011

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PostSubject: Poland : Football league protests Legia stadium fan ban - 06/05/2011   Sun 08 May 2011, 00:28

Poland : Football league protests Legia stadium fan ban - 06/05/2011

Source : Thenews.pl

Poland’s Ekstraklasa first division has expressed concern over the local government decision to ban fans from tonight’s league match between Legia Warszawa and Korona Kielce after rioting at the Polish Cup final on Tuesday.

“[The] decision [to hold tonight’s match behind closed doors] will bring disastrous consequences to the image of the league,” says a statement by the Ekstraklasa management board.

“It adopts the principle of collective responsibility for hooliganism that took place at a different stadium and in a competition not associated with with Ekstraklasa SA,” the statement continues.

The local government decision, taken in consultation with Warsaw police, was taken after Legia Warszawa fans were involved in rioting at the Polish Cup final, which the Warsaw club won after a penalty shootout against Lech Poznan. The stadium in Bydgoszcz was damaged and police had to use rubber bullets and water canon to break up the disturbance.

The incident was made all the more embarrassing for Polish football as representatives of the European governing body UEFA were sitting in the stands at the time, monitoring procedures ahead of the Euro 2012 championships to be co-hosted by Poland and Ukraine next year.

The Ekstraklasa management says that their competition was being punished for what is, fundamentally, a social problem.

“In our opinion, the only effective method of eliminating pathology from football stadiums, as took place after the Polish Cup final, is to quickly identify and severely punish persons who have committed crimes,” says the statement released yesterday after the decision to force the game tonight to be played in front of an empty stadium.

“This decision causes huge financial losses for clubs and will in no way contribute to the elimination of violence and vandalism at football stadiums in Poland,” concludes the statement.

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Poland : Football league protests Legia stadium fan ban - 06/05/2011

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