FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Eintracht Frankfurt is forgoing its allocation of tickets for Wednesday’s Champions League game at Napoli in protest over what it calls an “unlawful” decree from Italian officials limiting ticket sales to visiting supporters.
The club is objecting to a decision by local authorities in Naples banning any fans who are residents of Frankfurt from buying tickets, following unrest between supporters during the first leg in Germany.
“We do not wish to have anyone on site running the clear and obvious risk of an arbitrary administrative decision, the like of which we have been experiencing since the first leg in an unprecedented way on the part of all those responsible in Naples,” Frankfurt board member Philipp Reschke said late Sunday. “We will therefore be forgoing our entire away allocation, unless some aspect of the decree should change at short notice, contrary to expectations.”
Frankfurt’s appeal against the decree was rejected on Monday, the Bundesliga club said. It said it will also appeal that decision.
“In view of the (lack of) time, this is now primarily about the principle and the future,” Reschke said.
The dispute began last week when Italy’s interior ministry ordered Napoli not to sell tickets to any German fans because of security concerns following the trouble between supporters around the first leg in Frankfurt last month. Local police made several arrests amid altercations between fans.
The Bundesliga club’s appeal to a local court against that decision was successful, but the prefecture of Naples reacted on Sunday with a ban on selling tickets to fans with addresses in Frankfurt.
“The new decree is no less unlawful in its contents and its reasoning and furthermore is completely unsuitable, as it is a well known fact that two-thirds of our fans are from outside the Rhine-Main region and do not come from Frankfurt,” Reschke said.
Napoli has a 2-0 lead from the first leg. ___ More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
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