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Proper Support Or Last Days Of Sodom And Gomorrah? Cologne Fans Give Arsenal The Mother Of All Culture Shocks As Europa League Kicks Off With A Bang (Photos & Video)

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Given some of the fevered outcry, you'd be forgiven that the Emirates was raised to ash on Thursday night, as hordes of swivel-eyed Cologne fans stormed the gates, breached the perimeter walls and ransacked absolutely everything Arsenal Football Club hold dear.

Despite an official ticket allocation of just 3,000, a reported 20,000 Cologne fans made the trip to London for the Europa League clash, such was the prestige of the occasion, especially for fans of a club more attuned to the sapping disenchantment of perpetual Bundesliga relegation.

Champions League: Spartak Moscow Fan Shoots Flare Gun At Referee During Match Against Maribor (Video)

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Spartak Moscow can probably expect a letter from UEFA waiting on their doormat when they get home tomorrow morning after fans of the Russian club threw themselves a pyro party in the away end of NK Maribor's People's Garden stadium.

Indeed, at one point a flare gun was aimed and fired directly into the middle of the pitch, narrowly missing several players and the referee.

Pyromaniacs: Partizan Belgrade Fans Celebrate Winning Title By Lighting Flares To Create ‘Ring Of Fire’ Around Entire Stadium (Photos & Video)

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Photo: @SerbianUltras/Twitter

A triumphant 5-0 final-day victorysaw Partizan Belgrade secure the Serbian Super Liga title at the weekend, pipping cross-city rivals Red Star to the championshipby three points.

As is usually the done thing, the Partizan fans welcomed their teams eighthSuperLigawin by lighting a continous ring of flares around the entire stadium, giving the place a distinctly Dante-esque feel as the evening drew in.

‘We Couldn’t See Through The Smoke’ – Stoke Fan Offers Up Interesting Theory About His Side’s Late Capitulation Against Liverpool (Video)

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Having gone 1-0 up just before half-time, Stoke came within 20 minutes of pulling off a shock win over Liverpool only to see Roberto Firmino and Philippe Countinho emerge from the bench and snaffle a late win for Jurgen Klopp's side.

The result was galling for the Stoke fans, who have now watched their sidefall to four defeats on the bounce as they continue to gradually slide ever closer to the relegation quagmire.

Video: Liverpool supporters throw flares at Man Utd fans

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Video footage has emerge that seemingly shows flares being thrown at Manchester United fans from the Liverpool end during last night's Capital One Cup meeting between the two sides. The FA is now investigating the matter following reports that four flares were thrown by somebody among the 7,200 Liverpool supporter in attendance at Old Trafford.

AIK Fans Gave CSKA Moscow Players The Old ’4am Hotel Wake Up Call’ (Video)

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By Chris Wright

It was 4am on Thursday morning, and nothing was stirring, not even a mouse with the CSKA Moscow players sleeping soundly in their hotel beds, dreaming sweet dreams in lilting, pastel shades about merrily trouncing AIK in the Europa League play-off the next day.

Video: When fan parks get smoke-bombed (England 1-0 Ukraine)

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Until now, if you wanted to have your view of a Euro 2012 match obscured by smoke your best bet was to attend a Croatia game. But with Slaven Bilic's side and their flare-wielding army sent packing from the tournament, the organisers have stepped up to the mark by allowing flares and smoke bombs in [.

Video: Hopeless Slovakian hooligan lights a flare in his face

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This bungling ultra finds out the hard way why footballing authorities are not particularly keen on you bringing flares to matches. Spotted on Dirty Tackle


Bosnian Cup Derby Between FK Borac & Zeljeznicar Abandoned After Linesman Stoned On Touchline (Video)

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By Chris Wright

The Bosnian Cup semi-final between FK Borac Banjaluka and Zeljeznicar Sarajevo had to be abandoned yesterday evening after home fans began pelting the linesman with stones with one missile drawing blood from the back of the official's cranium...

Serving as a fine example of the hole Bosnian domestic football is currently in, referee Midhat Arnatuvic's decision to abandon the game marked the second successive time the fixture has had to be written off mid-game due to crowd violence, whipped up by nationalist chanting and ethnic provocation.

Turkish Side Eskisehirspor Banned From Lighting Flares, Respond Thusly… (Video)

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By Chris Wright

The spoilsports over at the Turkish FA have recently banned fans from lighting flares in the stands, though fans of Super Lig side Eskisehirspor obviously didn't take to kindly to the memo and, at their very next game, goaded the powers-that-be by unfurling a huge 'troll face' banner (like the one RVP gave Tim Krul the other night) and lighting several flares through the holes in it before rolling the bugger back up, tucking it away and carrying on like nothing had happened.

Polish Under-8′s Game Abandoned…Due To Flares, Ticker Tape And Crowd Trouble (Video)

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By Chris Wright

Flares? Check. Ticker tape? Check. Giant flags? Check. Legions of shirtless men chanting at eardrum-rupturing intensity? Check. Must be the Polish Under-8′s league at the local leisure centre then...

Wow.

Culture

Lisbon in flames / A Chama Imensa This is a new one for us. A...

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Lisbon in flames / A Chama Imensa

This is a new one for us. A few nights ago, a leader of Benfica's ultras dropped us an email. The Benfica Ultras arethese guys, as a reminder.Benfica's road to Amsterdam, the home of this year's Europa League Final, continues in Turkey tonight againstFenerbahce, home of sone of the most passionate and devoted fans in the world.

Ronaldo the father. Myself the gullible?

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By Jordan Brown

There is a small humanity in me when it comes to football. I found it in between the transfer sagas of Robin Van Persie and Jovetic—nestled amongst the endless moneyed sagas of a dozen moneyed clubs, Cristiano Ronaldo—of all the possible people—cried out for a sympathetic ear, and of all the people, this Barcelona fan heard it.

Through Ryu’s Lens: The Milan Derby. Not often does a...

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Through Ryu's Lens: The Milan Derby.

Not often does a Milan derby decide who wins Serie A. It's even rarer when the derby's winner is not one of the title contenders. But this was exactly the case on Sunday. Inter Milan outplayed their rivals, but subsequently awarded Juventus their 28th Serie A title.

Match between 8-year-olds in Poland abandoned due to crowd...

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Match between 8-year-olds in Poland abandoned due to crowd trouble.

Remember when you were eight years old kicking around without a clue about tactics or even how to play in different positions? Remember when 500 supporters showed up with flares and streamers showed up to ... ahem.

Vancouver Whitecaps

Jamaica’s strategy when playing at home: “We get them high and then we try to beat them’

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The U.S. will play Jamaica in a World Cup qualifier at the National Stadium in Kingston on Friday -- a place known to opponents as The Office since "no one wants to go to the office." But as Tropigol.com explains, this isn't your typical office (unless you work at High Times magazine):

That atmosphere can be a bit intimidating and quite unique for international sports since there's the pungent scent of marijuana that has been known to permeate from the crowd.

Impact Fans Trash BMO Field – And Lose Again in the V-Cup

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Exclusive video from TFC's win over the Impact Wednesday night at BMO Field, including video of Impact fans throwing chairs and flares from the top of the East stands onto TFC fans below
Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)

Europe

PAOK’s “Unimaginable Hatred”

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Passion often equates to violence in football. PAOK has some passionate fans, as the YouTubers tell us. Rapid Vienna traveled there for a Europa League matchup, where they found, according to the official statement, "unimaginable hatred." Well then. That's something.

The Europa League should be sponsored by the companies which produce flares and balaklavas.

Flare Fights At Panathinaikos-Olympiakos

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The match sounds like it could've been Backdraft II from reports, but the YouTubes have thus proven fruitless, if through combining factors of volume and lack of time. (There probably is a Backdraft II, right? Starring a bastard cousin of the Baldwins that went straight to video?)

The game was canceled, people were arrested, and 4200 retreads of this very same video landed on the internet.

riot police

PAOK and Rapid Vienna fans have flare fight before Europa League match

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Shortly before Thursday's Europa League match between PAOK and Rapid Vienna in Greece, the visiting Rapid fans came out of the stands and launched an attack on the home supporters that made the Toumbas Stadium resemble a warzone. The Rapid fans launched flares and fireworks into a stand filled with PAOK supporters like missiles and the PAOK fans who didn't flee the rain of fire retaliated with by launching flares and fireworks of their own back down at their aggressors.

Eh Montpellier! La la la la Paillade!

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Notice the eccentric and loveable Louis Nicollin (aka Loulou) Montpellier president sporting a new barnet, bottom right.

"It was a dark and stormy night" as Craven Cottage's own Edward Bulwer-Lytton might have put it.

Eh Montpellier! La la la la Paillade!

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Notice the eccentric and loveable Louis Nicollin (aka Loulou) Montpellier president sporting a new barnet, bottom right.

"It was a dark and stormy night" as Craven Cottage's own Edward Bulwer-Lytton might have put it.

Athens Derby Between Panathinaikos & Olympiakos Abandoned After Stadium Set On Fire (Photos & Videos)

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By Chris Wright

The Athens derby between the two strongest sides in Greek football, Olympiakos and Panathinaikos, had to be abandoned with eight minutes left after sadly predictable rioting broke out amongst the crowd (populated solely by Panathinaikos fans as, ironically, no Olympiakos fans were allowed to attend for fear of trouble)Â though, in actuality, the match was beset with violence and stupidity which began several hours before kick-off when hundreds of youths attempted to make their way into the stadium without tickets.

Euro 2012

Euro 2012: Semifinal Spectacular

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Happy Humpday fellow pleasure seekers! Sooo...good news (for those who are not named Cristiano Ronaldo or part of the Spanish NT)! Thanks to adidas football, we're in Donetsk today to give you our exclusive take on the creative, crazy and creatively crazy fashion stylings from the streets and beyond.

Italy wants sanctions against Spain, Croatia for fans jeering their anthem

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Euro 2012 has already had significant problems with racism, fan violence and even illegal underpants ads, but now Italy says they will file a complaint with UEFA over another grand disgrace: anthem booing.

From Football Italia:

"I will tell the FIGC to ask UEFA for significant sanctions against these fans who jeer the Italian anthem," said CONI (Italian Olympic Committee) President GianniPetrucci.

Polish fans show you how to get an Under-8′s game abandoned

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Getting excited enough about the beautiful game to throw flares and ticker tape is one thing, but doing it in a gymnasium during a match between 8 year olds? Welcome to Poland!

Euro 2012 is going to be fun.

H/T A Football Report

tennis balls

Horror Hair: Montpellier President Louis Nicollin Vowed To Have Orange Mohawk If Club Won Ligue 1…

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By Chris Wright

With an annual budget of just £27 million, little Montpellier beat Auxerre to win their first ever Ligue 1 title on the final day of the French season at the weekend, knocking nouvelle riche fatcats Paris Saint-Germain back into second spot in the process which meant that, courtesy of a bold wager made back in April, Montpellier's owner, 68-year old businessman Louis Nicollin, had to do this to his hair (orange and blue being MHSC's club colours).

Tennis balls and toilet paper can’t keep Montpellier from first Ligue 1 title

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PSG beat Lorient on the final day of the Ligue 1 season, which meant Montpellier had to win or draw against last-place Auxerre to win their first top-flight title in the club's history.

In front of a bitter crowd in Auxerre, that task become much more difficult than it first seemed when the home side went up 1-0 in the 20th minute.

Artur Boruc’s Friday Rage List

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AAAAHHHHHHHH I AM ARTUR BORUC AND THIS IS A LIST OF THINGS THAT MADE ME ANGRY THIS WEEK:

1. MY HAIR -- AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH I TENSED ALL OF MY MUSCLES AT THE SAME TIME AND SHOT EVERY HAIR ON MY HEAD INTO THE SUN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DEAL WITH THAT ALIENS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DEAL WITH IT!

The Rest

No More Pyro, No More Party?

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Since last season football authorities have been clamping down hard on flares inside stadiums, handing out hefty fines to clubs whose fans misbehave and set them off inside the stadium. Flares have long been a part of the terrace culture here and add to the the colour and the atmosphere but could those days be coming to an end?

Brondby And The Danish FA Are Working Together To Develop ‘Safe’ Pyrotechnic Flares That Burn At Low Temperatures

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Brondby have announced that they have joined forces with the Danish Football Association (DBU) to help develop a flare that is much safer to use in a stadium environment.

Much like everywhere else, it is illegal to set off flares, smoke grenades and/or firecrackers inside Danish football stadiums, though many fan groups still persist indoing so.

ARSENAL to be charged over Galatasary flare episode. What!?!

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We all know that UEFA are a farce and this has been proved once again with the news that Arsenal are to be charged because Galatasary fans smuggled in numerous flares which they threw onto the pitch during the game. Flares are very common in Turkey and you will see hundreds of them lit up [...]

Minor League Screwup

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What's wrong with this image?

On the surface nothing, it's an image of the Timbers Army from a match against Real Salt Lake at Rio Tinto Stadium in which a group of fans set off some flares and were later punished by the league for their actions. While some SGs have worked out deals with their front offices to use smoke machines or contained smoke bombs, it's general knowledge that setting off flares in the stands is going to get you in trouble with security and the league office.

Cologne manager wants fans to ‘father children in the stands’

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Tired of fans engaging in violence and dangerous amateur pyrotechnics shows at football matches, Cologne manager Holger Stanislawski has made a plea, urging them to have unprotected sex in the stadium instead.

Cologne fans engulfed the RheinEnergieStadion in thick black smoke and stormed the pitch after their side was relegated from the Bundesliga last season.

Athletic Bilbao fans brought flares for club’s airport send-off

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Athletic Bilbao will play Barcelona in the Copa del Rey final in Madrid on Friday and their fans were very eager to give them a warm send-off (literally). Some packed into the back of a truck that followed the team's bus to the airport, while others waited there with flares and flags held aloft.

Dusseldorf fans storm pitch before playoff actually ends

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Fortuna Dusseldorf's Bundesliga promotion/relegation playoff against Hertha Berlin teetered on the edge of mayhem before eventually succumbing to a premature pitch invasion that probably helped them hold on for the victory.

Dusseldorf won the first leg 2-1 and took a quick lead in the second leg by scoring in the first minute.

Liverpool 4-1 Chelsea

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Goals:
Essien OG 19'
Henderson 25'
Agger 28'
Ramires 50'
Shelvey 61'

Well that was strange. And even though that 90 minutes was approximately the exact opposite of what we've become used to at Anfield, "strange" is entirely expected after this marathon campaign.

THE SOUTH STAND REPORT : Toronto v. San Jose... or at least these injuries have suitable replacements

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The [bad] Cheesequakes logo has been retired in favour of this NASL rehash.
Canada right? Cold? Wintery?
That's bullsh-t. It's broken 20 C every day for the last 9 days. Today's forecast, cold, rain and misery. And talking about the weather is typically clichéd, but in football terms, it's important.

Athens derby abandoned because it was on fire

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Even without the away Olympiakos fans barred from Sunday's Athens derby against despised rivals Panathinaikos due to league restrictions, there was still enough violence and explosions to get the match abandoned.

From Reuters:

The start of the second half was delayed by 45 minutes as fans pelted police with flares, molotovs and missiles and was subsequently abandoned altogether with nine minutes remaining with Olympiakos 1-0 ahead through Djamel Abdoun's 51st-minute goal.

Turkish FA bans flares, Eskisehirspor fans give them special flare-packed tifo response

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Turkish football fans have probably kept many flare companies in business over the years, but when the Turkish FA banned them from stadiums, their brand of pyromaniac fun seemed to be over.

The fans of Super Lig club Eskisehirspor had other ideas, though. In response to the decision, they unfurled a giant trollface banner equipped with holes just so they could light flares and hold them throughout the banner like flaming Swiss cheese.