European football’s governing body, UEFA, sent out a powerful message during its UEFA Cup Final at the Stadio Olimpico in Seville.
Before the kick off between Celtic FC and FC Porto, a board carrying the message “Unite against racism” was displayed. Over 1200 T-shirts bearing the same slogan and information kits were also distributed to the media. All official printed material such as fan leaflets and the 45,000 copies of the match programme also featured anti-racist messages. FARE information brochures were displayed and two members of the German supporter federation BAFF (Buendnis Aktiver Fussball-Fans) represented FARE at the cup final.
This initiative by UEFA follows the “Unite Against Racism” conference in March 2003, jointly organised by UEFA, FARE and the English FA. It gathered national associations, major clubs football leagues, anti-racist fan groups and other organisations together to rid the game of racism.
UEFA is planning similar anti-racist initiatives for their Champions League Final at Old Trafford in Manchester on 28 May 2003.