Bayern face sanctions over banner
UEFA has opened disciplinary proceedings against Bayern Munich for an offensive banner displayed by fans during Tuesday’s 1-1 Champions League draw against Arsenal.
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Bayern supporters were seen to be holding a sign reading: “Say no to racism, say yes to Kosovo” during the last-16 second-leg tie at the Allianz Arena.
The banner was referencing the campaign to have Kosovo recognised as an official country which can take part in FIFA competitions.
Kosovo was given permission by world football’s governing body to play against other FIFA members in international friendlies, and recently played Haiti in their first ever match, but so far have not gained full member status.
The nation declared its independence from Serbia in 2008, but continues to be the subject of a territorial dispute. So far, 108 of the 193 United Nations member states have recognised Kosovo’s independence.
UEFA confirmed its decision to open disciplinary proceedings against Bayern via a statement on its official website on Wednesday, which also said that the Bavarian club are being investigated for allowing the clash against Arsenal to kick off late.
The statement read: "Disciplinary proceedings have been opened against FC Bayern München for discriminatory behaviour of their supporters (Article 14 UEFA Disciplinary Regulations), display of an illicit banner (Article 16(2e) DR) and late kick-off (Article 11(2g) DR) at their UEFA Champions League round of 16 match against Arsenal FC, the 1-1 draw in Germany on Tuesday.
"The case will be dealt with by the UEFA Control and Disciplinary Body 20 March 20."