Linfield FC (Throwing of objects; field invasions by supporters), Decision of 20 July 2017, UEFA Decision
Circumstances of the case
As a reaction to the second goal scored by Celtic FC, the club’s players were celebrating at the corner flag in front of the North stand. Supporters of Linfield FC threw a plastic bottle and a cigarette lighter onto the pitch without hitting any player. In numerous occasions during the match, Linfield FC supporters threw items such as coins and plastic bottles towards the player, some of the items hitting the respective players. In the 73rd minute, a Linfield FC supporter jumped from the stand to pitch level but was immediately caught and pushed back into the stand by stewards. The club in its statements referred to the intensive security measures it implemented in such a high risk match, pointing to the fact that most of the incidents were a reaction to previous provocations by Celtic FC players.
Legal Framework Article 16 (2) UEFA Disciplinary Regulations.
With regard to the throwing of objects, the CEDB noted that a large number of object were thrown onto the field of play on several occasions. In particular, when a specific Celtic FC player wanted to take a corner kick during the match, the club´s supporters threw a large number of objects towards him, some of them according to the UEFA security officer hitting the player. The question as if those objects hit the player is irrelevant when assessing the responsibility of the club for the misconduct contemplated in Article 16 (2) (b) DR. The same stands as for the arguments referring to a previous provocation of the Celtic FC player, as well as for the pitch invasion which was admitted by the club. In view of the seriousness and multiplicity of the offences committed and the club’s previous record, the CEDB decided to order the partial closure of the Linfield FC Stadium during the next UEFA competition match in which Linfield FC would play as the host club, and, in particular Linfield FC shall closed South stand lower sector I of the stadium. In addition, the club is fined €10’000.
Chairman: Partl Thomas (AUT)
Berzi Sándor (HUN)
Hansen Jim Stjerne (DEN)
Members: Gea Tomás (AND)
Leal João (POR)
Řepka Rudolf (CZE)
Wolff Joël (LUX)