On Tuesday, the federal prosecutor’s office has demanded a 5,000 euros fine and two away matches without supporters, with postponement, against Antwerp for the misconduct of its supporters in the match at Club Brugge. Antwerp fans then stormed the blue-black family stand.
Vincent Van GenechtenSource† BELGA
The dolls started dancing after the final whistle. Club Brugge had just won 1-0 against Antwerp when a group of supporters of the latter team were able to enter the nearest Club grandstand. In that family stand, blows would have been handed out to home supporters.
The federal prosecutor’s office is not happy about the facts: “Such facts are unacceptable and cause serious image damage to Belgian football. Such disturbances have no place in Belgian football. It is also not the first time that the Antwerp supporters go so far over the line.”
Master Jonathan Himpe, who represented Antwerp at the hearing, nuanced. For example, there would have been provocation from the Bruges supporters at first and the security measures in the stadium, partly due to a lack of stewards, would have been insufficient. “The police services were only able to intervene after forty minutes because they were standing in front of a closed gate. It was not manned by a flight attendant that day, so they lost a lot of time.”
Finally, Himpe also opposed the away games without visitors. That penalty could only apply if the match had been definitively abandoned, which was not the case here.