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UEFA and MPs ask for explanations regarding shocking Wembley scenes

Wed 14 July 2021 | 15:08

Julian Knight MP has asked FA's CEO Mark Bullingham for an explanation regarding the shocking scenes at Wembley stadium during the Euro 2020 final caused by ticketless fans and also UEFA opened an investigation into the events and hit the FA with four charges.

Ticketless supporters gained entry to Wembley Stadium ahead of Sunday's

Euro 2020

final between England and Italy and they clashed with stewards, police, and fellow fans.

UEFA

has opened a disciplinary investigation into events surrounding the match and the chair of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee

Julian Knight

MP has written a letter to the FA's CEO

Mark Bullingham

demanding an explanation.

In a letter to Bullingham - who blamed the clashes on "drunken yobs" - Knight wrote:

"The scenes witnessed at Wembley Stadium during the Euro 2020 final were shocking.

"The sheer number of ticketless people breaching the temporary, and arguably insufficient, barriers and physically attacking stewards and police to force their way into the match was appalling.

"Reports across social media of unsafe numbers in the stalls and terrified children being intimidated by the intruders did not line up with the stadium's statement that a small number of people had successfully entered the stadium without a ticket.

"In the FA's statement on the matter, it stated that 'security and stewarding numbers for the Euro 2020 final exceeded the requirements for the match and were greater than any other previous event' at the venue. Clearly, the numbers were still insufficient.”

Knight asked a series of questions regarding the FA’s plans for crowd control ahead of the game and gave Bullingham a deadline to respond to the questions until Tuesday.

Knight asked:

  • Given the relatively limited number of tickets available compared to the extraordinary nationwide interest in the event, what plans were in place for a potential 'storming' of the stadium? What went wrong?

  • What training were stewards given in anticipation of such a situation occurring?

  • Why were permanent barriers not installed to manage the anticipated crowds?

  • How many people, in total, gained access to the stadium without a ticket?

  • How many a) stewards and b) Metropolitan police officers were stationed outside the stadium to deal with the crowds?

  • What actions were taken to remove those without tickets once they had gained entry to the stadium, and how successful were those actions?

  • What repercussions will those who attacked the stewards and/or forced entry to the stadium face?

Harry Maguire

, who was one of the only two England players to score his penalty in the shootout, told The Sun that his father was left with suspected broken ribs after he was caught in a “stampede” caused by the ticketless fans.

The defender went on to say:

"We have to make sure it does not happen again.”

UEFA also hit the FA with four charges which were due to an invasion of the field by a spectator, throwing of objects by supporters, disturbances during the Italian anthem, and the lighting of fireworks.

However, the FA did not offer any new comment in response to Knight’s letter and stated that a full review will be carried out with the help of the police, the Greater London Authority, the Safety Advisory Group, and the tournament delivery stakeholders.

English football's governing body believes that there were enough security and stewards in place and the “unacceptable” and “dangerous” behavior of people caused the problems.


source: SportMob