Soccer UEFA probing Barca over separatist flags, chants

"It (Barca) is a democratic club which respects freedom of expression and any demonstration by its members is legitimate," he added.

  • Published:
UEFA probing Barca over separatist flags, chants play

UEFA probing Barca over separatist flags, chants

(Stuff)
24/7 Live - Subscribe to the Pulse Newsletter!

UEFA has opened disciplinary proceedings against Barcelona whose fans waved separatist flags and chanted slogans in support of Catalan independence at last month's Champions League final.

Barca confirmed on Wednesday that European soccer's governing body, which prohibits political demonstrations at matches, had begun proceedings but added that the club did not yet have an official reaction.

Barca beat Juventus 3-1 in the showpiece match at Berlin's Olympic stadium to clinch their fifth European Cup.

Josep Maria Bartomeu, who is standing for re-election as Barca president in this month's poll of members, defended the club's fans and said both sets of supporters had shown "exemplary" behaviour at the match.

"UEFA needs to get to know much better what Barca is and what Catalonia is," he said at a campaign rally.

"It (Barca) is a democratic club which respects freedom of expression and any demonstration by its members is legitimate," he added.

Barcelona are a source of pride for many independence-minded Catalans and fans often take the chance at matches to emphasise the region's separate identity from the rest of Spain.

The club came under fire from the ruling People's Party (PP) after May's King's Cup final against Athletic Bilbao, when the national anthem was roundly whistled by both sets of fans despite the presence of King Felipe at Barca's Nou Camp arena.

Bilbao is in the Basque Country, where many people are also in favour of independence from Spain.

Do you ever witness news or have a story that should be featured on Pulse Nigeria?
Submit your stories, pictures and videos to us now via WhatsApp: +2349055172167, Social Media @pulsenigeria247: #PulseEyewitness & DM or Email: eyewitness@pulse.ng. More information here.