Marseille president threatens not to attend Benfica game after ‘unfair’ banning of supporters

Olympique de Marseille’s fears came true 48 hours ahead of their trip to Benfica in the first leg of their Europa League quarter-final when the French police confirmed that it would be classifying the home leg next week as a high-risk fixture. 

This means that Benfica fans will be banned from travelling to and attending the fixture next Thursday, in return the Portuguese club decided to deliver a reciprocal response yesterday evening. 

In a press release, Benfica notified Marseille fans that all sales for the game would be cancelled and they would not be allowed to be admitted into the game tomorrow evening at the Estádio da Luz. 

They further warned both fans, “In these circumstances, we urge Marseille supporters not to travel to Portugal and Benfica supporters not to travel to France, in order to avoid possible tense situations.” 

Marseille hopeful for a solution

However, due to the short notice, this action has left some Marseille fans stranded in the city having already made and committed to travel plans to see their club play. It’s a situation that the French club are still working on a solution for, but with little time remaining, it seems unlikely that there will be a reversal of the current decision. 

Marseille president, Pablo Longoria, has voiced his frustrations for the supporters and threatened to not attend the game tomorrow evening if a solution cannot be found. “If it must come to it, I will not attend tomorrow’s meeting out of solidarity with our supporters but also in opposition to the unfair nature of this situation in which everyone must assume their responsibilities.” 

GFFN | Nick Hartland

More European Football News