UEFA has issued an apology to Liverpool and Real Madrid supporters for the chaotic and distressing scenes that took place before last Saturday’s Champions League final.
The match, which Madrid won 1-0, was delayed by 36 minutes after officers forcefully held back people trying to enter the Stade de France in Paris. Riot police sprayed pepper-spray and teargas on fans, including women and children.
In a statement, European football’s governing body said: “UEFA wishes to sincerely apologise to all spectators who had to experience or witness frightening and distressing events in the build-up to the Champions League final at the Stade de France in Paris, on a night which should have been a celebration of European club football. No football fan should be put in that situation, and it must not happen again.”
UEFA said an independent review, led by the Portuguese politician Tiago Brandão Rodrigues, “aims at understanding what happened in the build-up to the final, and determining what lessons should be learned to ensure there is no repeat of the actions and events of that day.”
Earlier on Friday, Real Madrid called for answers from organisers over the treatment of supporters at the game. “We want to know what were the reasons that motivated that designation of the venue for the final and what criteria were taken into consideration taking into account what was experienced that day,” said the European champions.
“We also ask for answers and explanations to determine who were those responsible for leaving the fans unattended and defenceless. Supporters whose general behaviour was exemplary at all times. As clearly seen in the revealing images provided by the media, many of the fans were assaulted, harassed, mugged and robbed with violence.”