UEFA to refund Liverpool fans caught up in Champions League final chaos

Many fans faced severe disruption before last year's final in Paris Credit: PA Images

UEFA has announced it will refund all Liverpool fans who experienced disruption before last year's Champions League final.

The Reds lost 1-0 to Real Madrid but serious congestion problems outside the Stade de France in Paris saw thousands of fans penned in against perimeter fences and stuck in a motorway underpass ahead of the game.

Those same supporters, who had already been targeted by local youths trying to steal tickets, were then tear-gassed by police trying to alleviate further problems after a decision was made to close turnstile gates but that only compounded the issue.

Fans stranded outside the Stade de France Credit: PA Images

UEFA has said refunds will be available to all fans with tickets for gates A, B, C, X, Y and Z where the most difficult circumstances were reported.

All fans who according to the access control data did not enter the stadium before 9pm (the originally scheduled kick-off time), or who were not able to enter the stadium at all, will be eligible for a refund.

UEFA will also offer refunds to all fans who purchased accessibility tickets along with those of their accompanying persons.

Liverpool fans showing their tickets for the game. Credit: PA Images

The body says it also has provisions for those who bought their tickets directly from Liverpool football club.

They added that refunds to fans of Real Madrid who meet the refund criteria will be processed based on the requests received from the ticket buyer via their customer service.

They say the same will apply to neutral supporters who purchased tickets directly from UEFA and who are eligible for a refund.

Commenting on the special refund scheme, UEFA General Secretary Theodore Theodoridis said: “We have taken into account a huge number of views expressed both publicly and privately and we believe we have devised a scheme that is comprehensive and fair.

"We value the input from the Liverpool FC supporter organisations Spirit of Shankly (SoS) and Liverpool Disabled Supporters Association (LDSA) as well as the open and transparent dialogue throughout this period.

"We recognise the negative experiences of those supporters on the day and with this scheme we will refund fans who had bought tickets and who were the most affected by the difficulties in accessing the stadium.”

In a statement, Liverpool fan group Spirit of Shankly said: "This unprecedented move is the result of tireless work, alongside FSE and Ian Byrne MP, to hold those responsible for the catastrophic events in Paris.

"With a promise to reimburse supporters, UEFA have gone some way to acknowledging their part in the fiasco.

"But it does not excuse UEFA, exempt them from criticism or lessen the need for them to implement all of the recommendations made by the Independent Inquiry.

"We will work alongside LFC and publish details once we know how and when refunds will be processed."

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