BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Belgian soccer club Anderlecht have been hit with a 5-0 loss, a fine and an order to play a home match behind closed doors after their fans forced the abandonment of the club’s game against Standard Liege earlier in April.
Anderlecht fans threw flares and smoke bombs onto the pitch during the top flight league match in Liege on April 12, forcing it to be abandoned after just 32 minutes. The players had already been forced from the field twice before.
Standard were leading 2-0 at the time and have now been awarded a 5-0 victory by the Belgian football association.
The football association decided on Tuesday that Brussels-based Anderlecht should also be fined 5,000 euros (£4,315) and forced to play a game behind closed doors. The club said they would appeal the stadium closure ruling.
With the loss confirmed, Anderlecht are fifth in the Belgian championship standings with five losses and a draw from their playoff matches to date, having finished fourth in the regular season.
The club, Belgium’s most successful, are at risk of failing to qualify for European competition for the first time in 56 years. They also parted with their coach two weeks ago.
The football association also fined Standard 3,500 euros whose fans also used pyrotechnics, albeit before the match.
(Reporting by Philip Blenkinsop; Editing by Christian Radnedge)