San Siro stand closed for Milan derby
Inter Milan fans risk being outnumbered by AC Milan followers at their 'home' game on Sunday night after the San Siro's Curva Nord was closed by the Italian Lega Serie A.
• Wilson: Inter mistakes
The Nerazzurri supporters have been dealt the same punishment given to Juventus for similar chants during their 3-0 home win over Napoli last month, which now fall under the term 'territorial discrimination' and which the Italian football authorities are clamping down on this season.
As a result, months of work and thousands of euros spent by fans on creating the traditional banner which is draped over the entire stand as the teams walk onto the field have gone to waste, infuriating Inter fans who have slammed the league's heavy-handed and "nonsensical" approach.
"The FIGC (Italian FA) once again want to make themselves the protagonists of a shameful, nonsensical, so-called respectability… once again trampling all over the pure passion with which our lads have been preparing for the past three months a setting worthy of a city derby," read an announcement on a website representing Inter's Ultra fans.
"Now, enough is enough. We're not going just to stand here and passively watch these small theatrics."
Fans of Milan may be asked to boycott the match, or at least refrain from using their own prematch banner, while Inter have announced they are going to appeal the sanction. Some Inter fans with tickets in other sections may also stay away from the event in protest.
Meanwhile, one of the Inter fans accused of territorial discrimination has given his version of events to the Gazzetta dello Sport.
"It's true, we chanted the usual chants against Neapolitans that we've been chanting for 30 years," he said. "We could see the inspectors there with notebooks in their hands, noting down every single word we said.
"There were 200 of us among 50,000 at the stadium. To underline how ridiculous they are, we said the same chants about Milan, but the inspectors didn't write those down. After Napoli scored, they came closer to us again to hear our reactions. Since they couldn't hear us very well, we spelled it out to them -- including saying Milan should be burnt down."