UEFA Suspends Stadium Ban For Atletico
Posted by hiphopmama on October 16, 2008
Fernando Torres will get his wish and return to the Vicente Calderon as a member of his new club Liverpool, but he’ll only be in the role of observer. Torres and Liverpool FC were upset by UEFA’s decision to move the Champions League match to a venue at least 200 miles outside Madrid as punishment for the Calderon crowd’s racist antics, claiming that it would impose too much of a burden on the team and traveling fans who had already made arrangements for the match. “After immediate consideration of the request for suspension,” UEFA overrode its original stadium ban and suspended it pending appeal. Now that he will get to go home, though, Torres will be unable to play after sustaining a hamstring injury in Spain’s World Cup Qualifying match against Belgium on Wednesday.
Of course, UEFA still stresses that it takes these matters very seriously, and that “it does not mean that the decision …has been set aside.” Right. I get the reasons for suspending the ban on this particular match given the circumstances and late notification, but somehow UEFA’s continued touting of its “zero tolerance policy” on racist behavior rings a little hollow. It’s kinda like dealing with a rebellious child – sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and impose some consequences on them. Granted, that doesn’t mean you can never go back on your word if the situation merits it, but this just fits in with a general disregard for the matter. Once is understandable. Twice, three times, ALL THE TIME makes a pattern.