Spanish government defends Atlético
The government will support Atletico de Madrid in response to the UEFA ban.16 October 2008
MADRID -- The Spanish government will support Atlético de Madrid's appeal against an exceptional penalty from the Union of European Football Associations when it responds to a letter sent to Prime Minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero by UEFA boss Michel Platini.
The letter, in which Platini asked for explanations about the allegedly excessive use of force by Spanish riot police against French fans, was sent days after the 1 October incident at Atlético Vicente Calderón stadium, but as of Wednesday was unanswered.
A government source said that the administration will defend the actions of the police and support Atlético in its complaints against the unusually harsh two-game home stadium ban, EUR 150,000 fine and five-year probation period.
The response is to be accompanied by the results of an investigation into the incident as well as video footage from the stadium.
UEFA said the penalty is necessary because of the Spanish police’s involvement and the allegedly racist behavior of Atlético fans.
[El Pais / Expatica]