UEFA have ordered Bayern Munich to close a portion of their stadium in their next Champions League game because of an offensive banner of Mesut Ozil.
A small section of Bayern Munich fans displayed a homophobic poster depicting an insulting image of the Arsenal star next to the words "Gay Gunners" during the 1-1 draw at the Allianz Arena.
UEFA have decided that stern action must be taken in an attempt to stamp out prejudice in Europe's top competition and have forced Bayern to close sector 124 of the stadium for their second quarter-final leg against Manchester United.
It may make David Moyes' task of knocking out the reigning champions that little bit easier as they will enter a less intimidating Allianz Arena on April 9. With Bayern Munich heavy favourites to retain the trophy and Manchester United rank outsiders, they can use all the help they can get.
The area that has been closed off is exactly the same place the banner was held aloft as Arsenal crashed 3-1 on aggregate to Bayern Munich; the second time in succession they have knocked the Gunners out in the last 16.
Pep Guardiola's side have also been fined £8,345 for the “discriminatory behaviour” over the banner.
A UEFA statement read: “Bayern supporters... displaying of an illicit banner, the UEFA control and disciplinary body has decided to order the partial closure of the (stadium) in particular, the closure of sector 124 for Bayern’s next UEFA competition home match, namely their UEFA Champions League quarter-final second leg against Manchester United on April 9.”
The banner of Ozil certainly made a bigger impact on the game than the man himself. Arsenal's £42.5m man was withdrawn at half-time after suffering a hamstring injury in the opening minutes.
Arsene Wenger subsequently confirmed that Ozil would need to sit out a number of key fixtures, adding to an injury list that still includes Jack Wilshere, Theo Walcott and Aaron Ramsey amongst others.
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