UEFA charges Spartak Moscow with racism after alleged monkey chants at Liverpool youth game

UEFA charges Spartak Moscow with racism after alleged monkey chants at Liverpool youth game
UEFA has begun disciplinary proceedings against Spartak Moscow after accusations their fans racially abused Liverpool player Bobby Adekanye with monkey chants during a youth game.

Spartak Moscow II played Liverpool under-18s, managed by former club captain Steven Gerrard, on Tuesday, September 26, before the two senior sides met at Otkrytie Arena in their Champions League Group E game.

Liverpool made an official complaint to UEFA, in which they claimed Spartak fans in the stands aimed monkey chants at Nigerian-born Dutch Adekanye after the 18-year-old winger came on as a second-half substitute.

UEFA has subsequently charged the reigning Russian Premier League champions and the matter is set to be reviewed on October 19.

On the pitch, Spartak II went on to win the game 2-1 at Football Pitch 4 in the Russian capital.

On the evening of September 26, Spartak and Liverpool played out a 1-1 draw, Philippe Coutinho equalizing after Fernando had put the hosts ahead with a precise free-kick curled into the top right-hand corner.

That game was threatened to be played behind closed doors after Spartak fans fired a rocket at the referee during their previous Champions League group game at FK Maribor in Slovenia.

Instead the Moscow club were subsequently barred from selling tickets to fans for their next away game in the tournament - a November 1 tie against Sevilla in Spain, as well as being fined €60,000 ($72,000).

The match in Slovenia was marred by violence when home fans attempted to attack Spartak and also initiated violent street battles with police before the match kicked off.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp told RT Sport in his post-match press-conference in Moscow that he recognized “a really good atmosphere” at the ground, where fans made commemorative banners to welcome the return of the Champions League football after a 15-year absence.

“What I recognized was a really good atmosphere,” Klopp said. “I’m not really interested in the great atmosphere at an away stadium.

“But about the discussions (about the fans’ behavior), when we heard it, it’s not that we’re looking forward to game behind closed doors, I prefer playing in a full stadium.”