Real Madrid fans have brought shame upon the Bernabeu less than a week after the disgusting scenes there that shocked the international football community.
This most recent episode occurred during Real’s UEFA Champions League match against Bayer Leverkusen, played on Tuesday 23 November 2004. Again, the Spanish crowd “Monkey chanted” whenever Leverkusen’s Roque Junior had the ball.
Disturbingly, TV cameras showed small groups of Real fans, heavily tattooed with Nazi swastikas, repeatedly making Nazi-salutes. Additionally, some German Neo-Nazi banners were displayed. There are no reports of stewards or the police ejecting any fans for racist behaviour.
Previous abuse at the Bernabeu
Last week, England’s black players suffered similar abuse during a friendly against Spain at the same Bernabeu stadium. Those incidents were so severe, that they caused international uproar. That match was under the jurisdiction of FIFA who are investigating the matter.
This latest incident, being a Champions League match, falls under the control of UEFA who are awaiting the referee’s report before starting proceedings. Previously, UEFA has fined clubs as punishment for the racist behaviour of their fans. They also have the power to insist that clubs play a number of games behind closed doors or even ban them from tournaments in extreme cases.
UEFA spokesman, William Gaillard said,
“The punishment will depend on the gravity of the matter. It could range from making the team play away or behind closed doors, to even the exclusion of the team. The punishment depends on what is reported, previous cases and we can also look at other evidence on video. The referees' report and the match delegate's report will be lodged 48 hours after the match. If there is any report of racist chanting then it will be referred to the UEFA Control and Disciplinary Body.”
UEFA uses the money it receives from fines to support its charity causes, of which FARE is one. FARE then uses these funds to reduce racism through education and high profile initiatives, such as our “Report racism hotline” that operated throughout Euro 2004.