Basel fined for Greenpeace protest
UEFA have fined Basel 30,000 euros for "insufficient organisation" after a Greenpeace protest was staged during a Champions League game against Schalke in October.
The game was delayed for four minutes when Greenpeace representatives abseiled from the roof of the Swiss club's St. Jakob’s Park stadium.
In front of UEFA president Michel Platini, who was attending the game, they unfurled a giant banner criticising Gazprom, the Russian gas company that sponsors both the Champions League and Schalke’s shirts. The banner read: "Gazprom: Don’t Foul the Arctic".
A Greenpeace statement explaining the protest said "the defenders of the Arctic showed the red card to the Russian sponsor of the Champions League and German club, and to their oil-drilling and dirty tricks in the Artic."
In a statement on their official website on Thursday, UEFA said: "Following a meeting of the UEFA Control and Disciplinary Commitee, FC Basel 1893 have been fined 30,000 euros for insufficient organisation following incidents at their UEFA Champions League matchday two fixture at home against FC Schalke 04 on October 1."
Basel president Bernhard Heussler said his club could appeal, adding: "We acknowledge the 30,000 euro fine. It is too early for a further evaluation since we don’t have the grounds for the judgment yet."
Basel are also yet to decide whether they will take legal action against the third parties who staged the protest.
In the aftermath of the incident, Schalke general manager Horst Heldt was quoted by Bild as saying that "it is important there are organisations that are committed to things that concern all people. I can identify with it -- these are topics that are important to everyone."