The captain of a football team in eastern Germany has been sacked for displaying “sympathy” with neo-Nazi groups.
Daniel Frahn, who played for Chemnitzer FC, was seen sitting with members of far-right groups during a third division match on August 3.
The club said his behaviour was “massively damaging” to the club.
The city of Chemnitz was the scene of far-right violence in 2018, where neo-Nazis attacked migrants with bottles, tasers and knuckle dusters. A number of men were arrested in a police operation for allegedly plotting another attack, this time against politicians and civil servants.
They hounded migrants and performed the illegal Hitler salute in the city, exposing deep divisions over Chancellor Angela Merkel’s decision in 2015 to welcome almost one million asylum seekers to the country.
Chemnitzer FC said in a statement it had committed itself in a shareholders’ agreement to be a “bulwark against right-wing radicalism” following the events in summer 2018.
It added it had separated with Frahn with immediate effect “due to the sympathy for leading heads of the right-minded group ‘Kaotic Chemnitz’ and the disbanded group "NS-Boys", which was obviously displayed in the guest fan block of the Hallens stadium”.
A statement from the shareholders of the club slammed his behaviour, saying he “turned out to be a great sympathizer of the right-wing radical and inhuman group ‘Kaotic Chemnitz’”.
Frahn was caught up in an earlier controversy in March when some fans staged a tribute to a supporter Thomas Haller, who had died and was reportedly a neo-Nazi. Frahn was condemned for celebrating a goal by holding up a t-shirt emblazoned with the words: “Support your local hools (hooligans)".
The shareholders’ statement said “we now know for certain it was the wrong decision” to allow him to continue at the club after that incident, adding “his remorse at that time was a farce”.
“Daniel Frahn, there is no more room for you at Chemnitzer FC,” the statement ends.