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Stadium ban for Slovakia

Slovakia must play their UEFA EURO 2004™ qualifier against Liechtenstein behind closed doors.

UEFA's Appeals Body has ordered the Slovak Football Association (SFS) to play its next home UEFA EURO 2004™ match against Liechtenstein behind closed doors as punishment for the conduct of its spectators and organisational problems at last October's Group 7 qualifier against England in Bratislava.

Appeals submitted
The verdict, reached at the Appeals Body's meeting in Nyon today, follows appeals against the initial decision taken by the UEFA Control and Disciplinary Committee. Appeals were submitted both by the SFS and by UEFA Chief Executive Gerhard Aigner, in accordance with UEFA's disciplinary regulations.

Fans' behaviour
At its meeting in December, the Control and Disciplinary Body had fined the SFS €40,000 for the racist behaviour of Slovakian fans and a lack of organisation and order in the SK Slovan Bratislava stadium during the EURO 2004™ match against England on 12 October, which England won 2-1.

Documents examined
"After having examined all the documents of the case and the appeals submitted to it, particularly relating to the racist behaviour of supporters, the UEFA Appeals Body decided that Slovakia would have to play its next UEFA EURO 2004 home qualifier against Liechtenstein, scheduled on 2 April 2003, behind closed doors," a UEFA statement said. In addition, the SFS has now been fined €14,000.