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Incidents of football-related violence you would have never heard of (Part-1)

991   //    21 Mar 2012, 18:03 IST

Football has always been a game of passion, but sometimes this passion translates into hooliganism. After the Egyptian football riots in the Port Said  stadium, claimed the lives of 73 fans, more incidents of such fan violence have occurred but weren’t given much coverage by the press. While the Port Said tragedy was due to clashes between rival fans,  recent acts of fan violence have taken place due to many other factors.

Violence in Athens

Panathinaikos vs Olympiakos 

Athens, Greece
18th of March 2012

Panathinaikos fans clashed with the police after the police confronted 200 hooded men, seated near the players tunnel armed with clubs and iron bars.

The violence started about two hours before the game when hundreds of people tried to enter without tickets, and carried on until the game was called off with nine minutes to go. As per Greek football rules, no away fans were in attendance due to the fear of fan violence.

The stadium seats were set on fire and  firebombs which were prepared using water bottles filled with gasoline, liquid ammonia and sticks of dynamite were thrown at the police.  The scoreboard was also set on fire. Police arrested 50 people while 20 policemen were injured.

Romanian police attacking fans

Romanian police attacking fans

Romania vs Uruguay
Bucharest, Romania
29th February 2012

There has always been some tension between the authorities and the fans in Romania. With the governments austerity measures, the violence was waiting to spill over to football. On the 29th of February, around 500 policemen and stewards brutally attacked Romanian fans when they held up the message “FRF = RMGC. THE SAME MESS” (Romanian Football Federation = Rosia Montana Gold Corporation).

Violence in Brazil

Santos  vs Corinthians
Santos, Brazil
4th of March 2012

Though there was no violence during the game,  rival fans had a no holds barred fight outside the stadium. About 60 supporters of Corinthians, armed with iron bars surprised a few Santos fans just a few meters from the stadium.Later there were clashes between the hooligans and the police, with hooligans throwing flares, crackers and other pyro in front of a helpless looking police force.

With so much violence in Brazil, its no surprise why they don’t want to allow the sale of alcohol at the FIFA World Cup which will be held there in the year 2014.

The Ultras culture surely creates a magnificent atmosphere at most of the games with songs, choreography and pyro but sometimes it does tend to get out of hand. When fanaticism crosses into hooliganism, it can be very dangerous for everyone. The fans, the establishment and most importantly, the players.

I live for Indian football, and hope that one day we can play the World Cup.
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