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Manchester City could be forced to play in empty stadium

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On Tuesday night Paul Scholes let his colours shine through by mocking Manchester City's support for their Champions League clash with Roma, but in a strange twist of fate City could actually play their next game in front of no fans at all.

Manuel Pellegrini's side travel to CSKA Moscow next, and with the Russian's currently serving a stadium ban the fixture could be played behind closed doors.

The ban comes as a result of three separate incidents, two involving racist chanting and one case of violent behaviour.

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CSKA's first group stage home game, against Bayern Munich, was held behind closed doors on Tuesday and Uefa officials will meet on Friday to decide whether or not to continue the ban.

Incidents

One of the most high-profile incidents came during City's last trip to Moscow in October last year.

During that Champions League group stage meeting Yaya Toure was subjected to racist chanting which lead to Uefa enforcing a partial stadium ban.

That particular ban seemed to have little impact on the miss-behaving Moscow men, and on September 17 this year they were involved in a number of incidents before and during their Champions League opener with Roma.

Supporters and police clashed prior to the game and once in the Stadio Olimpico, the Russians lit and threw flares at opposing fans.

Toure

The incident during the teams last meeting in Russia marred what should have been a proud occasion for Toure who was captaining his side in the absence of Vincent Kompany.

Speaking after that game, the midfielder said: "I'm not just disappointed, I'm furious. I'm very, very disappointed about what those fans have done.

"I think Uefa has to take action because players with the same colour of skin will always be in the same position.

"For me, as captain, I was wearing an armband which said 'no to racism' and I was totally disappointed. I told the referee. It was unbelievable and very sad."

Scholes

The prospect of playing in an empty stadium will seem alien to City's star names, though Manchester United legend Scholes was quick to notice a number of empty seats at the Etihad on Tuesday.

Speaking before the game, Scholes, who was working as a television pundit, said: "I was lucky enough to play at Old Trafford and we always talked about the atmosphere on a Tuesday night, the special atmosphere you create, and the crowd is rocking when you go out for a warm up. At quarter past seven and there's empty seats everywhere."

Official figures said the attendance for Tuesday's fixture stood at just over 37,500. In context, that's just over 5,000 more supporters than came through the gates for City's League Cup clash with Sheffield Wednesday and 8,000 down on the 45,600 who watched the 1-1 draw with Chelsea.

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Topics:
Manchester City
Paul Scholes
Gnegneri Toure Yaya
Football

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