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Mar 26, 2014

Basel ordered to play in empty stadium

NYON, Switzerland -- UEFA has punished Basel for fan hooliganism by ordering the Swiss club to play its home Europa League quarterfinal against Valencia in an empty stadium.

UEFA says a second stadium-closure order was deferred for a two-year probationary period.

Basel fans forced play to be stopped by throwing fireworks on the pitch during its 2-1 victory at Salzburg last Thursday.

The referee took the teams to the dressing rooms for several minutes during the first half of the last-16, second-leg match.

Basel advanced 2-1 on aggregate, and hosts Valencia in the first leg on April 3.

Basel must also pay a 107,000 euro ($148,000) fine. UEFA typically imposes bigger fines when broadcast schedules are disrupted.

The club can appeal.

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