Liverpool fans are still too scared to watch matches live. Others appear to be watching their heroes “under anaesthesia,” with the atmosphere at Anfield. One of football’s most iconic stadiums, described this season as “awful” by a local member of parliament and fan, Ian Byrne.
Liverpool fans still fear the Champions League final six months later
The events surrounding European football’s showpiece event overshadowed Real Madrid’s 1-0 win at the Stade de France on May 28. The start of the game was delayed by 37 minutes because fans struggled to get into the stadium. Police then used tear gas on thousands of supporters confined behind metal fences around the stadium.
For many Liverpool fans, the scenes brought back memories of the 1989 Hillsborough Stadium crush, which killed 97 fans. There were no fatalities in Paris. But there was still a physical and mental cost to pay for the authorities’ lack of preparation before the game. UEFA blamed the late start on supporters “arriving late,” despite thousands being held for hours outside the stadium before kick-off.
The French authorities then claimed that the problem was “industrial scale fraud” of fake tickets. However, a French Senate investigation in July concluded that the cause of the mayhem was a lack of preparation by French authorities and UEFA, as well as poorly executed security arrangements.
An independent investigation into the events surrounding the final concluded that the unprovoked use of tear gas by French police “constituted criminal assault.” Images from the final harmed France’s reputation for hosting major sporting events ahead of next year’s Rugby World Cup and the 2024 Olympic Games, both of which will be held at the Stade de France. However, there is dissatisfaction with the lack of action to implement the Senate report’s recommendations.