UEFA announce new fan safety plans for Champions League finals after Paris chaos

European football’s governing boby has acted following an investigation into the treatment of Liverpool fans at last year’s Champions League final.

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UEFA has released a statement confirming that they have brought in measures to enhance safeguards for fans attending their club and national team competition finals.

The governing body formed an Independent Review Panel immediately after the abhorrent scenes experienced by travelling Liverpool fans at last season’s Champions League final in Paris.

Held at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, Liverpool fans experienced long delays for getting into the stadium and French police reportedly used pepper spray, as well as other forceful methods, which caused the crowd to stampede backwards and leaving some of them vomiting as others rushed for water from neighbouring bars to ease the pain.

It meant that kick-off on the day was delayed by half-an-hour and, initially, police blamed the travelling fans for the situation.

However, UEFA went onto bear full responsibility claiming: ‘It is remarkable no one lost their life’.

The whole situation was an incredibly scarring situation for the Liverpool fans, and for the club, as it evoked painful memories of the Hillsborough disaster.

UEFA have outlined that their goal is to provide a safe, secure and welcoming environment for all, ensuring spectators are well-treated, including by making stadiums more accessible to children, older people and people with disabilities as well as conversing with the Football Supporters Europe (FSE) to further involve fans in the planning and execution of the finals.

The statement reads: ‘After assessing all of the recommendations published by the Independent Review Panel, UEFA has brought in measures to enhance the existing safeguards for fans attending our club and national team competition finals.’

‘UEFA has drawn both on the recommendations of the Panel and the findings of an internal working group, established immediately after the 2022 Champions League Final.

‘UEFA has also had extensive and positive dialogue with fan groups, primarily through Football Supporters Europe (FSE) to further involve fans in the planning and execution of the finals.

‘UEFA has increased the number of its safety and security officers covering the finals. Dedicated project leads within UEFA are supported by external expertise covering areas such as safety, security and intelligence. Where necessary, officers are deployed in the host venue ahead of the final.’

Fans reacted to the news on social media with distaste, with one saying: ‘Do any of them include making sure the local police don’t mace the fans gaining entry or hit them with batons?’

Whilst another said: ‘You can tell the local police to leave the tear gas out of it for starters!’

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