Aleksander Ceferin Apologizes To Liverpool Fans For Last Season’s Champions League Nightmare

Aleksander Ceferin Apologizes To Liverpool Fans For Last Season's Champions League Nightmare

UEFA president Alexsander Ceferin has apologized for last year’s Champions League final squabble in Paris involving Liverpool fans..

In his first response to an independent panel’s report, in which UEFA was found to be “primarily responsible” for the chaotic scenes, Ceferin stated that UEFA will ensure that the situation does not happen again.

Liverpool’s match against Real Madrid was delayed by 40 minutes due to police targeting fans with teargas and forcing them into bottlenecks on their way to the stadium.

The independent panel found no evidence to support UEFA and French authorities’ claims that ticketless Liverpool fans were to blame for the ugly scenes that occurred prior to the final.

Ceferin told Gary Neville’s The Overlap YouTube channel that the French police had not communicated with UEFA and that the governing body would do everything possible to avoid a repeat of the Paris attacks.

He said, as per the Times: ‘I feel sorry for what happened and we will make sure that it doesn’t happen again, that’s the most important thing for me.

When I arrived at the game, I had a meeting with the King of Spain, and someone came over and said there was a problem with some fan entrances. We didn’t realize how serious it was at the time because Uefa has no jurisdiction outside of the stadium. We were unable to communicate with the French police.

Trust me, there is not a single person in Uefa who is not terribly sorry, and the main topic of conversation is how to make sure that it does not happen again. Thank God, nothing terrible happened.

‘We have to have better communication with the local authorities because in London [at the Euro 2021 final] again it was not Uefa who should protect outside the stadium, it was local police and, obviously, not very successfully.

‘We are doing everything we can and we will not let it happen again.’

Ceferin also accepted that UEFA’s initial statement blaming ticketless fans was a ‘mistake’ on their side.

He added: ‘It was hard to check what was right and what was wrong, we got some strange information. I really didn’t know the scale of the thing that was happening.’

Failures outside the Stade de France ‘almost led to a disaster,’ according to the independent review, which Liverpool fans were praised for averting.

Liverpool, who were furious that the review had been leaked before they had a chance to digest it, were relieved that their supporters had been cleared of blame, and Billy Hogan, their Chief Executive, praised their behavior in the face of opposition for preventing fatalities.

Hogan said Liverpool welcomed the findings of the report and the club issued a strongly worded statement in which they condemned the: ‘shocking false narratives (that) were peddled in the immediate aftermath of that night in Paris; narratives that have since been totally disproven..

The 220-page report concludes with 21 recommendations for hosting and organizing future events, and Liverpool has challenged UEFA to ensure they are followed in the future; Anfield’s demand is that Europe’s governing body: ‘do the right thing for the safety of supporters.’

UEFA is refunding all Liverpool fans who attended the Champions League final in Paris last year, in an unprecedented move that is likely to cost millions of dollars and demonstrates how badly UEFA mismanaged the showpiece event.

Aleksander Ceferin Apologizes To Liverpool Fans For Last Season's Champions League Nightmare

Many Liverpool fans have already filed class action lawsuits against UEFA, and hundreds of fans with legitimate tickets were denied admission due to the chaos or because they were accused of having fake tickets because stewards were untrained and scanning devices were faulty.

Published on: March 15, 2023. at: 1:23 pm

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