Liverpool fans are to blame for the interruption of the Champions League final

The French sports minister said on Monday that Liverpool fans without valid tickets were responsible for the initial problems with the audience in the Champions League final, and the problem was then exacerbated by local youths trying to make their way into the match.

Problems with the audience at the Paris match became a political issue ahead of the French parliamentary elections in mid-June, and the French government hosted an emergency meeting on Monday to discuss problems with the audience.

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“What we really need to keep in mind is that what happened first and foremost was the mass gathering of British supporters of the Liverpool club, without tickets or with fake tickets,” French Sports Minister Amélie Oudea-Castera told French radio RTL before a meeting.

“When there are so many people at the entrance to the stadium, there will be people trying to break through the gates of the Stade de France and a number of young people from the nearby area who were present tried to enter. by mingling with the crowd. “

The match was to be postponed by 35 minutes after police tried to detain people trying to break into the national stadium without tickets, while some ticket holders complained that they were not allowed.

More than 100 people have been arrested after the mob, French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said.

Darmanin said there were 29 arrests around and inside the Stade de France, half of which he said were “British citizens” and another 77 arrests in the surrounding suburbs of Saint-Denis in Paris, without the involvement of British citizens.

Darmanin added that although the French authorities had taken steps to prepare for the risk of problems, they had been caught unprepared by local youths who also showed up to cause problems at the match.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is “very disappointed” with the treatment of Liverpool fans, his spokesman said on Monday.

“The footage from the Stade de France this weekend was deeply upsetting and disturbing. We know that many Liverpool fans traveled to Paris on time … and we are extremely disappointed with the way they were treated,” the spokesman said.

Television footage showed pictures of young men jumping through the stadium gates and fleeing the guards to enter the match. Others outside, including children, were used with tear gas by riot police, a Reuters witness said.

“We must take all necessary steps to ensure that this never happens again,” Oudea-Castera said at the beginning of the meeting.

“The images are deplorable, disturbing, because we can clearly see that we are not prepared for events like the Olympics,” far-left leader Jean-Luc Melenchon said on Sunday, while his far-right rival, Marine Le Pen, called the incident a “humiliation.” for France.

Far-right politician Eric Zemmour also said the problems were caused mainly by local youths from the nearby Seine-Saint-Denis neighborhood, not Liverpool fans.

British Technology Minister Chris Philip said he was shocked by the photos.

“I was horrified to see these pictures of fans, including children, fans with disabilities, sprayed by the French police,” he said. “And from the photos I saw, there was no obvious justification for such behavior.”

The chaotic scenes have been declared a national disgrace in France, which is set to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup and the 2024 Olympic Games.

Liverpool chief executive Billy Hogan said the club wanted a “transparent investigation” from UEFA’s governing body. British Sports Minister Nadine Doris has also called on UEFA to investigate.

Oudea-Castera said there were no problems with Madrid’s supporters in Saturday’s match and that the Spanish side had managed to control its traveling fans better than Liverpool.

She added, however, that France needed to look into strengthening the security of high-risk football matches, with further problems erupting on Sunday after Saint-Etienne were relegated from the French Ligue 1.

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