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29th May 2022

France Interior Minister blames Liverpool fans for Champions League final trouble

Simon Lloyd

Darmanin thanked police for their handling of the situation

French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin has placed the blame for the trouble which delayed Saturday’s Champions League final between Liverpool and Real Madrid at the feet of ‘British supporters’.

The start of the game in Paris was pushed back from its scheduled 8pm (GMT) kick-off time when it became clear thousands of fans had been unable to access the Stade de France and were being held outside.

Pepper spray is also believed to have been used by police, with footage showing some people – supporters and locals, according to reports – seen climbing perimeter fences in an attempt to get into the stadium.

Liverpool have since released a statement confirming they have asked for a formal investigation to be conducted. UEFA have also said that the problems were caused by supporters with ‘fake tickets’.

Darmanin says stewards were assaulted

Darmanin went one stage further than UEFA, specifically blaming ‘British supporters’ in a tweet which also praised the police’s handling of the situation.

‘Thousands of British “supporters”, without tickets or with counterfeit tickets, forced entry and sometimes assaulted the stewards,’ his tweet read.

‘Thank you to the very many police forces mobilised this evening in this difficult context.’

Liverpool fans ‘attacked by riot police’ after game

Footage which appeared to have been taken after the game, which Real Madrid won by a single goal, showed Liverpool supporters being ‘attacked’ by riot police.

Several heavily armed officers were filmed hitting supporters at one of the dedicated fan zones in the east of Paris, with a woman seen among the victims of the police violence, despite appearing to be unprovoked.

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