Celtic partially close Parkhead for Rennes clash amid safety concerns

Celtic have announced a partial closure of Parkhead for Thursday’s Europa League clash with Rennes amid ongoing safety concerns.

The Scottish champions were fined £12,900 by UEFA on Friday after fans displayed an “illicit banner” and sang obscene chants during their Europa League game at home to Lazio last month.

Celtic were also fined £10,400 for supporters setting off flares in the Europa League win over Cluj in October and fined £11,000 for their fans using flares and throwing objects in the play-off second-leg win over AIK in Stockholm in August.

With another charge hanging over the club for fans using  pyrotechnics during the win over Lazio in Rome on November 7, the Parkhead board have acted and closed rows A to M in the rail seating section of the stadium which holds the club’s ultras, the Green Brigade.

“Celtic has ultimate responsibility for the safety of all our supporters and it is a responsibility which we take very seriously,” said a statement on the club’s official website.

“We need to tackle any behaviour which can compromise the safety of our supporters including the use of pyrotechnics, overcrowding and offensive chanting or banners.

“Following the latest UEFA disciplinary decision we can confirm that there will be a partial closure of the rail seating section at Celtic Park for the forthcoming match against Rennes.

“All those supporters affected will be notified and will receive a refund.

“This decision follows similar significant sanctions being imposed against the club already this season for the use of pyrotechnics during the matches against CFR Cluj and AIK Stockholm.

“The club also faces another UEFA charge for the use of pyrotechnics during the match in Rome recently and this will be heard on 12th December 2019.

“Regrettably, these charges and sanctions continue to damage the club’s reputation and this behaviour continues to threaten supporter safety.

“UEFA’s rules and the club’s long-established ground regulations are very clear.

“Indeed, the club engages in regular dialogue with all supporters groups to ensure these are well known and understood.

“We have considered this matter very carefully. It is disappointing that behaviour which is unsafe and which we all know will breach UEFA and club regulations has continued.”

Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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