Genoa game halted by fans angry at 'unworthy' players
James Mariner is a journalist who has been boring The Independent sports desk with mindless statistics since June 2007. Helping with various, wide-ranging desk duties (I made the tea once), supervising workies and the endless researching of panels, James has an unnatural love of all things football, and in particular the Europa League, being a Tottenham Hotspur supporter. He cites Brian Sears and Ledley King among his heroes and can even find something interesting in Burnley v Hull City. On a good day.
Monday 23 April 2012
Genoa's 4-1 home defeat to Siena yesterday was suspended for nearly an hour, with Genoa "Ultra" fans demanding their players hand back their club shirts which the supporters claimed they had dishonoured.
Eight minutes into the second half of the Serie A game, with relegation-threatened Genoa 4-0 down, some supporters started throwing fireworks and rubbish on to the pitch, and clambering towards the players' tunnel.
The game was halted, and as the Siena players left the pitch, Genoa captain Marco Rossi went to speak with the Ultras. Rossi was told the players were not worthy of the shirt, and, after talks, most of the Genoa players removed their shirts at the supporters' request.
Not all the players followed suit, though. Giuseppe Sculli seemingly refused, and continued to discuss the situtation with the Ultras. After more negotiations, the game restarted. Many Genoa fans turned their backs to the final 37 minutes, although their team did pull one back.
Genoa president Enrico Preziosi said he hoped the Ultras would receive "a heavy ban" from the stadium, so the club can "find harmony again".
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