The first appearance of ŠK Slovan Bratislava on the European stage after winning promotion to the first division has been marred by acts of racism and neo-Nazism.
At the UEFA Intertoto Cup match Slovan against FC Differdange 03 (0:2) played in Luxembourg on Saturday 23rd June a group of Slovan fans engaged in racist „monkey chants“ whenever the black player of Differdange touched the ball. Many of the 120 away fans had „Thor Steinar“ clothing, a German street wear brand closely linked to the far right or wore shirts with “88” – a neo-Nazi code for “Heil Hitler”.
Pictures showing a group of Slovan fans in Luxembourg with 88-shirts and engaging in “Sieg Heiling” have also been published on the „Ultras Slovan“ web-site.
UEFA to investigate
FARE has sent a report to UEFA urging the European football governing body to „take appropriate disciplinary measures and also attempts to prevent racist acts at any forthcoming Slovan matches in the UEFA Intertoto Cup competition“.
UEFA Disciplinary Services have confirmed today that they will investigate the case and deliver their verdict on 12 July 2007.
The return leg match will be played on Saturday at the home ground of Slovan in Bratislava and Slovak anti-racist campaigners have issued a public call urging SK Slovan and the Slovak Football Association (SFZ) to take active steps to prevent any manifestations of racism by far-right Slovan supporters.
Daniel Milo, director of the Slovak FARE Partner Ludia Proti Rasizmu said today:
In the the national league we have major problems with racist and neo-Nazi fans supporting Slovan. Unfortunately, the Slovak Football Association is not very active in addressing the problem, and the situation seems to have worsened since a new management has been in charge.
We have approached the FA and Slovan and proposed pro-active measures for the return leg. A first step would be to ban the well-known leaders of the racist fan clubs from the stadium.
In the domestic league the Slovan Ultras supporters are infamous for racist acts. On 20th April 2006 a group of Slovan supporters organised a choreography to celebrate the birthday of Adolf Hitler. Also in April the same same group of fans chanted 'monkey noises' directed at Artmedia Bratislava player Karim Guede, who is also an International for Togo. See: http://www.farenet.org/news_article.asp?intNewsID=877 )
The Slovak Football Association has failed so far to implement article 58 of the FIFA Disciplinary Code into its own statutes. The revised article explicitly states that any form of discriminatory statement or action must be punished with a suspension, fine or other sanction.
If Slovan win through to the second round of the UEFA Intertoto Cup, they will meet SK Rapid Vienna.