Manager held over parking ticket rivalry

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The Independent Online

A parking ticket that was given to the manager of a Spanish team by a policeman who supports their arch-rivals has caused controversy in Seville.

The Real Betis coach, Lorenzo Serra Ferrer, reacted angrily to the fine and was detained for four hours on Saturday by a policeman who is a season- ticket holder with their neighbours, Seville.

Serra Ferrer could be given a prison sentence if found guilty of kicking the officer. He denies the charge. Betis are 15 places higher than Seville in the League, and 21 points ahead.

"The whole incident is because of the pain of the 21-point advantage." Manuel Ruiz de Lopera, the Betis owner said. Ruiz de Lopera held the officer responsible for Betis dropping two points in Sunday's 2-2 home draw with Racing Santander, and said that he would break off relations with the Town Hall.

A Town Hall official denied victimisation and said the rules were the same for everybody.

n The mayor of Cremona yesterday apologised to Paul Ince for racist abuse directed at him by Cremonese fans during the Italian League match against Internazionale last weekend.