Bayern Munich Chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has condemned UEFA’s decision to ban both sets of fans from attending Tuesday’s Champions’ League Group E fixture between CSKA Moscow and the German champions.
The Russian Champions have been ordered to play Bayern between closed doors after CSKA fans were charged with racist behaviour during the club’s 5-1 mauling away to AS Roma on 17th September.
The game between CSKA and the Serie A giants had to be halted for two minutes during the second half as the opposition fans clashed with riot police inside the Olympic Stadium.
Coincidently, this is the third time in just five Champions League matches that CSKA fans have been charged with racist behaviour.
Manchester City midfielder, Yaya Toure was subjected to monkey noises and gestures when the two sides met in the Champions League group stage last October, whilst UEFA also charged CSKA for fans displaying far-right symbols at a match at Viktoria Pilsen just two months later.
UEFA’s strict ban imposed upon CSKA Moscow has also meant that Bayern fans are unable to travel to the Russian capital on Tuesday in fear of potential violence between both sets of supporters outside the Arena Khimiki.
It is expected that only journalists and emergency services will be granted access to the stadium on Tuesday evening, much to anger of Rummenigge who believes such action is not only unfair for both sets of supporters, but believes that the decision will take the atmosphere away from the game.
Rummenigge angrily told Sϋddeutsche Zeitung: “I have now been 40 years in football, and this is something that I have not yet experienced. Football is atmosphere, football is emotion.
“There are going to be no people in the stadium other than officials and a handful of journalists. That’s a pity, and no one needs that.”
The 60-year-old has also stated that several Bayern fans, who some have never missed either a home or an away game in which their beloved team have played in, wrote a letter to UEFA urging them to change their decision but to no avail.
The former West Germany international went on to say: “There are some of our supporters who have not missed an away game in 25 years. They have tried everything (to be there.) For example they even wrote a letter to UEFA. But in the end there was no success.”
Despite sounding upset at this news carried down by UEFA, Rummenigge has taken comfort in realising that every cloud has a silver lining, with this potentially coming in the form of midfielder Mario Götze who has made a promising start to the 2014-15 campaign.
The 22-year-old who scored the only goal in Germany’s World Cup final victory against Argentina in Rio de Janeiro in July has already netted four times in eight appearances for Bayern in every competition so far this season.
Despite experiencing lukewarm appearances for Bayern in his first season at the club, Rummenigge believes that Götze has adjusted to life at the Allianz Arena outfit and that the Bavarian giants are finally experiencing a taste of what is to come from the midfielder in the next few years.
The emphatic 60 year old said: “When you come as a 21 year old to Bayern, it doesn’t mean that you have made it in life. You have to give time to a young player in order for him to acclimatize here.
“I think there is a good chance that the shackles are finally free. I wish that him and us that he continues to carry on from where he left off in recent games.”