Serbia face Uefa ban after night of violence in Genoa
Serbia face a ban from international football after their supporters rioted and caused Tuesday night's Euro 2012 qualifier with Italy in Genoa to be abandoned after six minutes.
Italian police arrested 17 people, including the ring leader who was found hiding in the boot of a bus, following the violence that left 16 people, including two policemen, injured.
Uefa yesterday announced it had opened a "full and thorough disciplinary investigation into the incidents of serious disorder" at the Stadio Luigi Ferraris.
Uefa's Control and Disciplinary Body will decide on punishment on 28 October, and has several sanctions available, ranging from a large fine to disqualification from competitions in progress and/or exclusion from future competitions. Group C leaders Italy are also likely to be awarded a 3-0 walkover victory.
Reports from Serbia yesterday said the riot was an orchestrated demonstration of political violence designed to destabilise the pro-Western government and alienate the country from the rest of Europe.
The drug baron Darko Saric, who is on the run, was allegedly behind the ugly scenes that included thugs fighting with riot police and throwing flares on to the pitch, one of which nearly hit the Italy goalkeeper Emiliano Viviano.
Serbian fans also attacked their own team bus and hurled abuse at goalkeeper Vladimir Stojkovic who has been receiving death threats since he joined Partizan Belgrade in the summer, after a spell on loan at Wigan Athletic, having previously played for bitter rivals Red Star Belgrade.
The Italy manager, Cesare Prandelli, said: "The Serbia players have been assaulted by their own fans in their bus. Their goalkeeper [Stojkovic] was in our changing room, he was trembling and had fear – not only about the game but also in view of returning home." Yesterday, Serbia's ambassador to Italy, Sanda Raskovic-Ivic, apologised on behalf of the country.
Latest in Sport
Monaco is a street circuit where driver ability is more important than anywhere else and if we take ...
by Gareth Purnell
24 May 2013 02:00 AM
Three weeks ago as I drove off the Eurostar, I remember thinking what a very long time it was until ...
by Martin Ayres
23 May 2013 05:29 PM
McDowell did brilliantly to land the World Match Play title in Bulgaria last week, but it’s a format...
by Gareth Purnell
23 May 2013 09:13 AM
David Moyes delighted after Rio Ferdinand agrees to stay at Manchester United with new one-year contract
Sergio Garcia / Tiger Woods 'fried chicken' racism row takes fresh twist after 'coloured athletes' comment
After racist remark, Sergio Garcia fights for reputation as Tiger Woods slams 'hurtful' fried chicken joke
New Manchester City manager must deliver five trophies in five years
Manchester United slash interest bill by £10m a year
- 1 Pope Francis: Being an atheist is alright as long as you do good
- 3 'Sickening, deluded and unforgivable': Horrific attack brings terror to London’s streets
- 4 Archaeologists uncover nearly 5,000 cave paintings in Burgos, Mexico
- 5 Woolwich attack: The EDL will seek to exploit this evil crime for their own evil ends
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Get the latest on The Evening Standard's campaign to get London's children reading.
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.