Scarlets have launched an investigation into claims that supporters used racially abusive chants towards La Rochelle players during Friday’s European Champions Cup clash as well as allegations of unacceptable behaviour.
The reigning Pro12 champions reached the last four of the Champions Cup with a 29-17 victory over the Top 14 outfit, booking themselves a semi-final trip to the Aviva Stadium against tournament favourites Leinster.
But the fallout from what should have been one of the regions great victories has seen allegations of racial abuse and misbehaviour made from Scarlets supporters about other home fans, and the club have issued a statement to confirm that they are looking into the claims – made online – as they are “completely unacceptable”.
“An investigation will be undertaken to understand the full facts and background of the incident before commenting further,” a Scarlets statement read.
“We have a proud history of being a family club and events such as this are completely unacceptable.”
Claims on Twitter that tagged the Scarlets’ official account accused a group of drunk supporters of making ”monkey chants” towards members of the La Rochelle team, with others alleging that there were “lots of very offensive racists words”.
The victory saw a record crowd turnout for a Scarlets home match at the Parc y Scarlets, and the club were also keen to stress that the disorder was contained to small sections of the support.
The statement added: “The vast majority of the 15,500 sell-out crowd at Parc y Scarlets for the European Rugby Champions Cup quarter-final enjoyed a wonderful family-friendly occasion.”
Tournament organisers European Professional Club Rugby [EPCR] said that they are aware of the allegations and will work with the Scarlets to carry out the investigation. A spokesman said: “EPCR is working with Scarlets in order to establish the facts of the case reported from Friday’s quarter-final and won’t be making any further comment at this stage.”
The result saw Scarlets through to their first European Cup semi-final since 2007 – where they were knocked out by Leicester Tigers – and is a rematch of last season’s Pro12 semi-final in which Wayne Pivac’s side beat Leinster at the Aviva Stadium before going on to lift the title.
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