Watch: Liverpool MP Ian Byrne slams ‘disgraceful’ Champions League chaos at Westminster debate

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“I had to observe the police and authorities invent a pack of lies and pass the blame on to innocent people”

Liverpool MP, Ian Byrne led a debate at Westminster Hall on Tuesday morning, discussing the findings of the independent review into the 2022 Champions League Final in Paris

Ahead of the game against Real Madrid, Liverpool fans were teargassed, corralled and set upon by police outside the Stade de France as kick-off was delayed by over half-an-hour.

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UEFA and French authorities blamed ticketless Reds for the scenes of chaos but the independent report said there was no evidence to support the ‘reprehensible’ claims and said UEFA had to bear the ‘primary responsibility’ for the near disaster.

During Tuesday’s hearing, Mr Byrne, MP for West Derby, slammed the ‘disgraceful’ organisation of the final and opened the debate by thanking Liverpool fans for their actions despite provocation.

He said: “I’d like to start this morning by paying tribute to the magnificent efforts of the Liverpool supporters who saved lives through their actions in Paris.

“They also fought for the truth regarding the events of Paris, and refused to to be beaten by the lies and smears of UEFA and the French government, straight from the Hillsborough playbook.”

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He added: “We need to remember this could have happened to any set on fans in Europe.”

Mr Byrne described the horror he experienced when seeing announcements blaming late Liverpool fans for the delayed kick off of the Champions League Final between Liverpool and Real Madrid.

An independent review found UEFA guilty of causing the problems outside the Stade de France (Image: Getty Images)An independent review found UEFA guilty of causing the problems outside the Stade de France (Image: Getty Images)
An independent review found UEFA guilty of causing the problems outside the Stade de France (Image: Getty Images)

He also read a statement from a Hillsborough survivor, which read: “Thirty-three years ago I escaped the life threatening crush at Hillsborough and now I face a situation where one slip or trip and I could have been again witnessing deaths at a football match.

“These things happen, people make mistakes and they need to learn from them, only here, again, I had to observe the police and authorities invent a pack of lies and pass the blame on to innocent people rather than take responsibilities for their own failings.

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“Thirty-three years ago the police did all they could to fabricate a false narrative. Here we are with the French authorities doing exactly the same.”

Ian Byrne went on to thank those behind the report and journalists for fighting for the truth and discussed the ‘disgraceful’ organisation at the match.

  • Watch the video above of Ian Byrne opening the debate at Westminster Hall.

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