Champions League final: Paris police chief Didier Lallement apologises for tear-gassing Liverpool fans

[09-06-2022 02:52 PM]

Ammon News - Paris police chief Didier Lallement has apologised for tear-gassing supporters who were waiting to enter the Champions League final between Liverpool and Real Madrid at the Stade de France.

Speaking at the French Senate on Thursday, he said was sorry for authorising the use of tear gas but felt he had no other option under the circumstances.

Lallement said: "It is obviously a failure. It was a failure because people were pushed around and attacked. It was a failure because the image of the country was undermined."

He provided no evidence for his widely discredited claim that up to 40,000 supporters without tickets or with fake tickets attempted to enter the stadium.

"The figure has no scientific virtue but it came from feedback from police and public transport officials," Lallement added. "Maybe I was wrong, but it was constructed from all the information harvested.

"Whether there are 30,000 or 40,000 people, it doesn't change anything. What matters is that there were people, in large numbers, likely to disrupt the proper organization of the filtering. But that we count them precisely to within 5000, it doesn't change much."

Police chief Lallement's apology came after it was revealed Liverpool officials would meet the chair of UEFA's review into problems at the Champions League final in an attempt to help satisfy themselves the process will be fully independent.

European football's governing body appointed the Portuguese politician Dr Tiago Brandao Rodrigues to carry out an inquiry into the circumstances which saw huge congestion issues which led to thousands of fans being locked out of the Stade de France and some being tear-gassed by police prior to Real Madrid's 1-0 win.

However, there have been suggestions Rodrigues has links to UEFA president Aleksandar Ceferin and Liverpool are understood to be keen to ascertain the independence and scope of his review.

Officials also want full explanations to 13 questions they submitted to UEFA, only some of which have been partially answered, and details of which experts will be involved on the panel before they can make a decision on whether Rodrigues is the right person to lead the review.

It is understood UEFA, which has pledged unconditional access to its files and staff, has outlined its rationale for appointing Rodrigues but has not provided specific responses to the questions posed by the club.

Liverpool hope a meeting with the chair of the review panel, who will also meet Real Madrid officials separately, will provide more extensive answers.

Sources say they are keen to establish the process will be a thorough, independent and transparent investigation as they are unconvinced by the "independent review" terminology.

In the meantime, the club will meet with supporters trust Spirit of Shankly on Thursday to discuss matters surrounding the Champions League final, among other things.


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