Genoa fans furious with their
team's performances threw fireworks onto the pitch and told the
players to take their shirts off, halting play for 45 minutes in
a Serie A match on Sunday.
Relegation-threatened Genoa were losing 4-0 at home to
modest Siena when the unprecedented incident happened early in
the second half.
The referee stopped play as smoke bombs and firecrackers
were hurled onto the pitch by a small contingent of hardcore
Genoa "ultra" fans, some of whom then climbed over the perspex
barriers separating them from the field.
The fans, some of them hooded, demanded the players remove
their shirts after chanting they were not worthy of wearing
While Siena retired to their dressing room, most Genoa
players handed their shirts to captain Marco Rossi although
striker Giuseppe Sculli refused and began negotiating with the
"This violence is unacceptable," Italian football federation
(FIGC) president Giancarlo Abete said on television.
"Those are not fans. Sculli did the right thing by not
taking his shirt off. I hope these people are identified and
condemned. They should not be allowed into the stadium ever
Genoa pulled a goal back after play resumed and the match
Genoa, who had hoped to mount a challenge for the Europa
League spots at least this term, are 17th in Serie A only one
position and one point clear of Lecce in the relegation zone
with five games left.
The club's leadership appeared to lose its way this season
when Alberto Malesani was sacked in late December and replaced
by Pasquale Marino, who was himself fired before Malesani was
reappointed at the start of this month.
Italian football has shown both sides of its character this
week with the game coming together following the death of
Livorno's Piermario Morosini before more sordid match-fixing
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