UEFA Euro 2012: Russia slams 'dishonourable' behaviour of fans

Updated: 11 June 2012 10:39 IST

Russian football chiefs on Sunday vowed to do all they could to prevent a repeat of the violence that broke out at the national side's Euro 2012 opener against the Czech Republic.

UEFA Euro 2012: Russia slams 'dishonourable' behaviour of fans
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Russian football chiefs on Sunday vowed to do all they could to prevent a repeat of the violence that broke out at the national side's Euro 2012 opener against the Czech Republic.

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"We will work with our supporters so it doesn't happen again," the head of the Russian football federation, Sergey Fursenko, told reporters in Warsaw, as he led a delegation to honour the memory of Poland's late president Lech Kaczynski.

Kaczynski died with scores of senior Polish figures in an April 2010 air crash in Smolensk, western Russia.

European football's governing body UEFA announced late on Saturday that they had opened disciplinary proceedings against Russia for "the improper conduct of its supporters" at the match in Wroclaw, western Poland, on Friday, which Russia won 4-1.

One person with knowledge of the case told AFP that the federation was most likely to be fined but it was unlikely the country would be docked points or blocked from competing in future tournaments.

The UEFA investigation follows an attack on four volunteer stewards at the ground and reports of fireworks being set off and thrown, as well as the display of "Russian Empire" flags that have been adopted by some right-wing extremist groups.

It is also probing claims that Czech player Theo Gebre Selassie, who is black, was racially abused during the match, following a complaint from a monitoring group.

Fursenko maintained the federation had "taken measures to make sure that these type of incidents don't happen again. I think that everything will go well" but said it was difficult to comment on the situation as security was a matter for the hosts.

"We've explained our position and we'll try to prevent this type of thing happening again. It's unacceptable. We need to fight it. We've got to put an end to violence in the stands.

"Football's a party and if you ask me we should have a law against violence in stadiums in Russia."

Fursenko's comments came after an official statement issued in Moscow which called for calm and urged fans not to dishonour the country by being bad ambassadors.

"We consider that some of the country's fans who attended Russia's opening Euro-2012 match conducted themselves discreditably and acted dishonourably," the statement said.

"We appeal to all our fans who are currently in Poland. Please remember that you represent your country. Please respect yourself, your motherland and your team."

"We believe that those persons who use the sport venues for declaring their political or any other positions should not be allowed into the stands."

Topics : Football Euro 2012
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