Albania coach fined for homophobic remarks
For the first time in its history European football's governing body UEFA has penalised an official for making homophobic comments. Albania coach Otto Baric was handed a 3,000 Swiss franc fine by the UEFA Disciplinary Committee last week.
In 2004, while still Croatia national coach, Baric said in an interview with the newspaper Jutarniy List that homosexuality was abnormal and should not be practised by young people. He claimed he could spot a gay person right away and knew there weren't any in his team.
I don't want any gays in my team either, added Baric.
FARE staff reported the remarks to UEFA at the time but Baric could not be charged because he had was no longer working as a coach. Once he took the reins in Albania last autumn, however, UEFA were able to resume their investigations.
According to UEFA Director of Communications William Gaillard the decision is final and cannot be appealed.
1 August 2007
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