Celtic fined by UEFA for banner against Ferencvaros

By Euan Davidson

November 19, 2021

Celtic have been fined by UEFA after a fan protest against Ferencvaros.

When the Hungarian champions visited Parkhead, it was on a Tuesday at 3.30pm on a Tuesday. Naturally, that rubbed a lot of fans the wrong way, with Celtic supporters having to take time off work, school and other commitments to make the game.

Granted, they still did. There were more people at Celtic Park on a Tuesday afternoon than were at the Nou Camp on a Sunday for Barcelona v Valencia. However, the point remains; a lot of people were inconvenienced.

As such, the Green Brigade displayed a fantastic banner pre-game, which said “Conundrum: Fans Before TV” and a Countdown reference that… well, here’s the picture:

Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images

UEFA, as you’d expect, weren’t happy. According to the UEFA’s disciplinary committee, the club fell foul of the “Provocative offensive message, Art. 16(2)(e) DR” ruling [UEFA].

The UEFA Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body has decided “to fine Celtic FC €15,000 for transmitting a provocative message of an offensive nature”.

Honestly you might’ve expected a bigger punishment. Oddly, it was €5,000 more than PSV Eindhoven were charged for the same offence [UEFA].

Plenty of fines were handed out by the European governing body. As disciplinary meetings go, it was a busy one. Sparta Prague, Sturm Graz and severla other clubs saw punishments handed out.

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67 Hail Hail (Youtube)

Celtic fined by UEFA, but ultimately, Green Brigade were right to do it

You know what? It remains a good point made by the Green Brigade. It was funny, creative and valid.

For anyone who didn’t quite get it; the game was roughly on the same time as Countdown is played on Channel 4. Having to miss an episode of the long-running quiz show is heartbreak enough for anyone.

But the way Celtic were pushed into hosting a game at such an unusual time, purely because UEFA didn’t want a TV clash with the Champions League? Leaving COP26 and the Glasgow policing thing aside; there were ways around this.

Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images

Call it a scheduling quirk if you must, but it’s hard not to feel as if Celtic were short-changed by UEFA in the first place.

There was scope for Celtic to lose out a huge amount of match-day revenue. And for reasons that were pretty spurious.

So, power to the Green Brigade here. It was the perfect mix of humour and vitriol. €15,000 isn’t exactly much for a good point well made.

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