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Feb 17, 2014

Roma facing stadium ban for Inter game

Roma head coach Rudi Garcia praised his side for their 3-0 win over Sampdoria, despite recent criticism.

Roma may be forced to play their next home game against Inter Milan behind closed doors after more geographical discriminatory chants were heard during Sunday night's 3-0 Serie A win over Sampdoria.

• De Martinis: Roma bounce back

Closing the curva for that fixture -- due to the discriminatory chants aimed at Napoli fans in the recent Coppa Italia semifinal -- clearly did not make any difference as supporters from the two main stands showed solidarity for those locked out by making similar chants out of irony.

If the Lega Serie A sees fit, the whole of the Stadio Olimpico could be closed for the visit of the Nerazzurri on March 1, with the curva already due to be shut once again for that match.

"It's difficult to talk about the grotesque state Italian football is in," Roma general manager Mauro Baldissoni told Sky Sport Italia prior to kick-off on Sunday in front of just 20,000 fans. "The application of this rule has revealed itself to be incoherent."

The Lega has only this season started applying a rule which has existed for decades -- closing parts of stadiums up and down the country for an offence which had been repeatedly ignored down the years.

Insulting opposition supporters has long been part of fan culture, but only now has the Lega linked it to racial discrimination and started applying strict sanctions.

Juventus recently had to play two games at their Juventus Stadium with the curva closed, although they were given permission to fill the ground with children.

Roma had been hoping to overturn the Lega's initial two-game ban, but failed ahead of Sunday night's clash with Sampdoria.

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