Cologne bans fan club after post-match pitch invasion

Monday February 16th, 2015

Cologne announced on Monday that it has banned a fan group from attending future matches after members of the group stormed the pitch after Saturday's match against Borussia Mochengladbach, according to ESPN FC.

Riot police clashed with about 40 members of a fan group called "Boyz" after the group members went onto the pitch following Gladbach’s 1-0 victory.

The club issued a statement that said the group will no longer be recognized as an official fan club and that the season tickets of its members have been voided. "Indefinite" stadium bans were also issued.

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"Cologne justifies these drastic measures with the repeated misbehavior of the 'Boyz' fan group, which is damaging to the club.

"Leading members of the fan group were involved both in the pitch invasion at the end of the match as well as in huge, recognizably organized use of illegal pyrotechnic material."

Cologne faces a fine from the German Football Association for failing to control its fans and the club has promised to seek damages from those who wrecked the Rhineland derby.

"As has happened many times in the past, we make it explicit that the culprits will be made to account for any club punishments on the part of the (German FA) and any consequential costs,” the club said in its statement. “We are dealing in the interests of the overwhelming majority of our members and fans. We are not going to sit around a table with criminals."

- Phil Watson

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