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Europa League final: Rangers, Eintracht Frankfurt, Football Supporters Europe to make UEFA recommendations after fan concerns

Ibrox side had raised concerns over search procedures at Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium; Fans had permitted items removed by police; Rangers also reveal supporters were caused 'severe distress' over a lack of bottled water inside the stadium where the temperature was around 35 degrees

SEVILLE, SPAIN - MAY 18: Rangers fans during the UEFA Europa League Final between Eintracht Frankfurt v Rangers at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium, on May 18, 2022, in Sevilla,  Spain. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)
Image: Over 100,000 Rangers fans travelled to Seville for the Europa League final

Rangers, Eintracht Frankfurt and Football Supporters Europe (FSE) will make recommendations to UEFA following major concerns at the Europa League final in Seville.

The two clubs alongside FSE - who are an independent, non-profit association of fans recognised as a representative body on fan issues by UEFA - are working together after receiving a "huge amount of complaints and witness statements" from supporters.

Rangers already reported "major concerns" around the treatment of supporters including "overzealous" search procedures at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium which resulted in police removing battery packs, ear pods and ladies' make-up bags - all items which were permitted.

Image: At least 18,000 Rangers fans attended the Europa League final at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium

The clubs also raised concerns over facilities within the stadium including a lack of bottled water which Rangers said caused "severe distress" to many supporters as the temperature exceeded 30 degrees.

All three parties believe there could have been even more severe problems on the night were it not for the calm actions of the fans.

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A statement said: "Last Friday, representatives of Eintracht Frankfurt, Rangers FC, and Football Supporters Europe (FSE) met to debrief and discuss several significant organisational issues during the recent UEFA Europa League final in Sevilla.

"These issues could easily have led to even more severe problems on the night and it was only thanks to the calmness and mutual respect of both sets of fans towards each other that there were not more severe injuries suffered. All three parties applauded the remarkable calmness of the two fan bases, given the situation they faced.

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"Apart from the severe lack of food and - even more critically in the soaring temperatures - of water, there were several organisational problems around policing, body searches and beyond. Both clubs, as well as FSE, received a huge amount of complaints and witness statements from fans present in the stadium.

"All three parties will now work jointly to report back to UEFA and the local public authorities in Spain and will make recommendations to ensure these problems can never occur again at a European final.

"Fans spend a lot of effort, time and money following their teams all over Europe and expect to be treated with respect and dignity while attending football games. This expectation was not met at all at the Europa League final in Sevilla last week."

'I am so proud of Rangers fans'

UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin, right, hands a second place medal to Rangers' Borna Barisic after the Europa League final soccer match between Eintracht Frankfurt and Rangers FC at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan stadium in Seville, Spain, Thursday, May 19, 2022. Frankfurt defeated Rangers 5-4 in a penalty shootout after the game ended tied 1-1.
Image: Rangers lost the Europa League final on penalties

Over 100,000 Rangers fans travelled to Seville for the final against Eintracht Frankfurt and police confirmed just one German was arrested on the day of the final.

The club's vice-chairman John Bennett told Sky Sports: "We have had such good feedback from the police, the local authorities of this city and at La Cartuja, the stadium, and they have all said one thing, 'wow'. Overwhelmed and overwhelmingly positive by our fans' atmosphere, our fans' behaviour and this is for the fans.

"Everybody naturally thinks this oven of heat combined with your drinking beer and whatever, which football fans throughout the world do of course, and of course people look and say, 'is that a cocktail for something that might go wrong?'

"Boy oh boy. Our fans brought a cocktail of colour, of noise, of positivity.

"I just want to thank them. I respect them so much. They have carried this club over the last 10 years on their backs and their shoulders. I am so proud of them."

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