Monday 26 September 2016

UEFA express 'utter disgust' as they open proceedings against Russia following sickening violence in Marseille

Simon Peach

Published 12/06/2016 | 11:37

Crowd trouble: Fans scramble over fencing to escape hooligans as scuffles broke out after
the England vs Russia game in Marseille Photo: Kirsty Wigglesworth
Crowd trouble: Fans scramble over fencing to escape hooligans as scuffles broke out after the England vs Russia game in Marseille Photo: Kirsty Wigglesworth

Russia are facing serious UEFA sanctions after being charged with crowd disorder and racist behaviour following the sickening scenes that overshadowed Saturday's Euro 2016 clash with England.

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Ugly clashes in Marseille marred the build-up to the eagerly-anticipated Group B clash, with English, Russian and French fans involved in trouble over three days.

There had been a calmer atmosphere inside the Stade Velodrome, only for more unseemly behaviour to spoil an entertaining 1-1 draw in which Vasili Berezutsky's late header cancelled out an Eric Dier free-kick.

UEFA has taken swift action and announced on Sunday morning it had opened disciplinary proceedings against the Football Union of Russia, two years from hosting the World Cup.

Tempers flare between Russia and England fans
Tempers flare between Russia and England fans
Russian fans charge at English
An man injured in clashes is assisted by police officers in downtown Marseille
Police clash with England fans ahead of the game against Russia
Police patrol the streets of downtown Marseille
Rival supporters clash at the old port of Marseille
England fans try to escape trouble in the stadium as clashes breakout

European football's governing body handed down charges for alleged crowd disturbances, racist behaviour and the setting off of fireworks by Russia fans, with the case to be dealt with by the UEFA Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body on Tuesday.

England have avoided any charges and UEFA confirmed before kick-off that incidents outside the Stade Velodrome perimeter fell outside its remit.

UEFA said in a statement on Sunday: "UEFA expresses its utter disgust for the violent clashes that occurred in the city centre of Marseille, and its serious concern for the incidents at the end of the match inside Stade Velodrome.

"This kind of behaviour is totally unacceptable and has no place in football.

"Disciplinary proceedings have been opened against the Russian Football Union (RFU) for the following events occurring inside the stadium: crowd disturbances, setting off of fireworks and throwing of missiles.

"A decision on the sanctions to be imposed will be made within the next few days, once the RFU has been able to submit written statements and evidence.

An injured supporter at the port of Marseille before the game
An injured supporter at the port of Marseille before the game

"UEFA acknowledges that there were segregation issues at Stade Velodrome and will implement corrective measures to strengthen the deployment of security personnel at stadiums, in close collaboration with local authorities."

After flares and a firecracker were let off - both items are banned from ground - at the end of Saturday's match, Russian fans appeared to attack English supporters, breaking through barriers in the South Stand.

Those under attack were seen running for safety and before the match as many as 20 England fans were injured, with reportedly several seriously hurt, in bloody clashes between rival fans around the Old Port area.

French police used a water cannon and tear gas on rioters as fist fights and bottle throwing broke out.

More to follow...

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