More fan unrest sees Hungary, Belgium, Portugal all charged by UEFA
UEFA has thrown more countries under the bus after “crowd disturbances” during their 1-1 draw with Iceland on Saturday.
Fans faced off with police and stewards before the game when they tried to climb a fence in Marseille’s State Velodrome. It was the same section of the stadium where Russia and England fans fought during the opening round of group stage.
The fans then lit firecrackers during the national anthem and at points during the game.
UEFA has charged Hungary and the federation most likely faces a fine, according to the AP.
In a lesser case, Portugal was also charged and fined after a fan ran onto the field and took a selfie with Cristiano Ronaldo. Security reached the fan after he had approached Ronaldo, but the player waved them off long enough for him to take the picture.
Finally, Belgium was also charged and faces a fine after fans lit fireworks during a 3-0 win over Ireland on Saturday.
Currently, UEFA’s policy is to charge a country for its fans’ misbehavior, but with repeated offenses continuing to take place and the punishments failing to deter the behavior, the European governing body may want to reassess who it holds responsible for fan actions, such as the country with the most influence over security at its own stadiums. Otherwise, it results in awkward quotes like this:
“I cannot really imagine anything bad that they could have done outside the stadium,” said Hungarian defender Richard Guzmics. “But if they did, we encourage them to behave well outside and within the stadium next time.”