UEFA punishes Croatia for offensive fan chants and disorder at Nations League Finals

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NYON, Switzerland — Croatia’s soccer federation was fined 150,000 euros ($165,000) by UEFA on Tuesday for offensive chants and disorder by fans at the Nations League Finals last month.

In a further punishment, UEFA said Croatia fans cannot be sold tickets for the team’s next competitive away game – a European Championship qualifier in Armenia on Sept. 11.

A provisional sanction of playing a competitive home game in an empty stadium was deferred for a two-year probationary period.

UEFA said its disciplinary panel combined incidents at Croatia’s games at the Nations League mini-tournament in the Netherlands against the host and in the final against Spain, which won on a penalty shootout.

A 70,000 euros ($77,000) fine was for “discriminatory behavior” by fans, and other fines were for throwing objects and lighting fireworks.

“Racist behavior” by fans of men’s Under-21 Euros co-host Romania at a game against Ukraine last month was among charges brought by UEFA that added up to fines totaling 21,000 euros ($23,000).

The Romanian federation was also charged with “transmitting provocative messages of an offensive and of a political nature.”

Dutch club AZ Alkmaar was fined more than 80,000 euros ($88,000) for disorder at a home game against West Ham in the Europa Conference League semifinals in May. Some fans fought to try to get close to family and friends of the English team’s players.

A one-game stadium closure at AZ was suspended for two years, UEFA said.


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