The translated guide represents a practical tool for Croatian fans, stewards, media and the wider society to recognise offensive and discriminatory symbols in football.
The guide was produced in response to recurring incidents of discriminatory nature in Croatian domestic and international football.
In 2014 alone, Fare noted over 10 incidents involving fans and players of Croatian clubs and of the national team. Many of these incidents led to a number of UEFA sanctions varying from club fines to partial and full stadium closures, as set out in the Fare Observer Scheme Season 2013-14 review.
Since its launch, in Zagreb in November 2014, the guide has been distributed among all Croatian first division clubs, the Croatian Football Association, 30 media outlets, the Ministry of Sport and fans of professional clubs.
To increase the guide’s visibility, first division clubs were asked to upload the informative and educational resource on their websites. NHK Rijeka, who have been previously sanctioned by UEFA over its fans discriminatory behaviour, were one of the clubs to share it among its supporters.
Over the next months, with the support of the Ministry of Science, Education and Sport, YASA will visit Croatia’s 10 largest cities to promote the guide. Clubs, regional football associations and local governments will be invited to attend the events.
The Fare member is also looking to use the resource to work with players on the issues around discrimination in football.
YASA’s long-standing commitment to address discrimination in Croatian football has been highlighted through several initiatives over the years. In November 2014, the youth centre led a match-day action against discrimination in which all team captains of the first division clubs wore NO TO RACISM armbands.
In 2013, during the Fare Football People action weeks YASA launched a nation-wide programme against discrimination in football, the first of its kind in the country, which brought together different stakeholders of Croatian football and sport.