France’s interior minister will be questioned about his handling of the Champions League final. There are claims that he lied about Liverpool fans who were involved in unrest prior to the match.
Gerald Darmanin and Amelie Oudea–Castera will appear before Congress on Wednesday to answer questions regarding the scandal that saw Liverpool supporters pepper-sprayed while they waited for their turn at the Stade de France in Paris.
Mr Darmanin attributed the chaos to “fraud on an Industrial Scale”, stating that 70% of tickets were fake.
The Liberation newspaper mocked his claim that Liverpool fans had arrived without tickets or with fake tickets.
According to French media, only 2,800 tickets were scanned.
Dov Alfon, writing in the paper, wrote that if we believe the explanations given by the minister of interior, it would more like a detective mystery to make the best of Agatha Christie and Gaston Leroux or Maurice Leblanc pale in comparision: At security point A, 40,000 Liverpool fans “without a ticket” or “with false tickets” were allegedly present.
“But, at security point B, less that 800m away only 2,800 false tickets where scanned.
“Where and how did the 37,200 free-riders disappear?” They disappeared through a tunnel beneath the crypt of the Basilica (Maurice Leblanc), or did they just disappear?
Continue reading: Champions League final – What really happened at the Stade de France
He exhorted ministers to “renounce state lies, especially when they are quite absurd”.
Minister ‘causing dismay across Channel’
Le Monde published an opinion piece stating that Mr Darmanin’s “stinking defense of the police” was “causing dismay across Channel, which won’t fade away any time soon”.
The article was written by Olivier Esteves an academic. It warned that the minister’s lies are bringing back memories of Hillsborough, when Liverpool supporters were demonized by The Sun newspaper, just days after their support had been crushed at the stadium.
Le Figaro stated that the final “continues embarrassing the executive” and claimed it was marked “disastrous first communication”.
Guillaume Tabard, in an analysis article, wrote that the executive’s inertia in failing to respond had “inevitably focused public opinion and criticism from opposition”.
France’s opposition parties have all called for the creation of a parliamentary inquiry commission.
‘A credible figure’
RMC Sport in France, however, stated that the figure of 30,000-40,000. was an “credible extrapolation” using 2,800 fake tickets that were scanned.
RMC Sport stated that the amount of fakes detected was much higher than usual for this event.
The report stated that UEFA and France’s football association concluded that fake tickets were more common than previously thought.
Two days earlier, intelligence services had warned authorities that they expected about 50,000 English supporters to “not be ticket holders”.
According to a police document, “Some of them will have fake tickets and will attempt to use them in order to gain entry to the stadium.”