Finally a German team is in the final of the UEFA Europa League again. The game was expected with great anticipation. However, there were already clashes between fans in the run-up – and shortly after the kick-off also between two professionals on the pitch.
The final in the Europa League had been eagerly awaited – and things got exciting even before kick-off, when dozens of fans of Eintracht Frankfurt and Glasgow Rangers attacked each other in Seville, southern Spain. Around 6:00 p.m., they threw chairs from street cafes, bottles and other objects at each other in the city center, the local newspaper “Diario de Sevilla” reported. A video showed how fights broke out and people who were lying on the ground were kicked. Initially, nothing was known about arrests. The opposing groups retreated when the police arrived.
Five Eintracht fans were arrested earlier in the day. According to the police, they were part of a group of 200 German supporters who are said to have attacked Scottish fans near the cathedral in the city center on Wednesday night. On Wednesday, the police confirmed reports from the Spanish media on request. The German fans are said to have thrown flares, tables and bottles at the officials. They are therefore accused of disturbing public order and aggression.
150,000 fans – “This is outrageous”
The police chief in charge, Juan Carlos Castro, had warned of “serious problems” shortly before the first riots on Tuesday. Around 150,000 fans were expected in Seville for the final on Wednesday evening, 100,000 from Scotland and 50,000 from Germany. “This is outrageous,” said Castro. “That’s too many people with too much alcohol, most of them without a ticket to the game. And there are a lot of construction sites in the city. All of this can lead to serious problems.” 5,500 security forces were deployed for the finale. Castro spoke of the “most difficult game in recent years” in the Andalusian metropolis.
Each club received a contingent of 10,000 tickets for the final. The Estadio Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán only offers space for about 44,000 spectators. Most of the fans who traveled from Germany and Scotland therefore followed the final in front of large screens in fan zones and in the Cartuja Stadium or in pubs.
Frankfurt’s captain falls to the ground with a laceration
The German fans in particular must have held their breath there right at the start of the game. Team captain Sebastian Rode went down after a duel in the first minutes of the game. John Lundstram from Glasgow unluckily caught him in the head with an open sole. Rode suffers a laceration and has to be treated, the “Bild” newspaper and the television station nTV report. Rode then continues with a head bandage – while Lundstram gets away without a warning.