Foreign press comments on Friday’s incidents in Liège

To say that Sporting Anderlecht is in crisis is something of an understatement. The most successful club in the history of Belgian football with 34 league titles has had a disastrous start to Play-off I and will now face stiff sanctions from the Belgian FA due to the bad behaviour of its fans that led to the abandonment of Friday evening’s match against Standard de Liège.  

Friday’s incidents have not escaped the attention of the press in a number of other European countries.

Germany’s best-selling daily ‘Bild’ described the Anderlecht fans as “Ultra idiots” in an article devoted to Friday evenings trouble.

The paper writes that “The Anderlecht supporters were clearly frustrated and provoked from the start of the match. Anderlecht were 2-0 down when the match was abandoned”.

The Spanish sport daily Marca wrote that “Smoke was in the air from the beginning of the match due to the smoke bombs and fireworks. The referee and the players did all they could, but fans continued to throw things onto the pitch. A lot of Bengal-lights were thrown down into the area around Guillermo Ochoa’s (Standard’s keeper) goal”.  

The Dutch daily ‘De Telegraaf commented on how the incidents were a downer for Anderlecht’s Dutch Coach Fred Rutten.

A number of French, German and Italian websites also had something to say about events in Liège. The website of the French sport daily ‘L’Equipe’ wrote that “The behaviour of fans cost Anderlecht dear today”.

The Austrian daily ‘Heute’ spoke of “serious rioting” and added that Friday’s events were “Once again a bitter disappointment for Anderlecht”.