West Ham accept UEFA supporter ban for Europa League clash at Rapid Vienna after 150 ticketless fans ‘stormed turnstiles’ at Genk clash
There will be no West Ham fans present at their Europa League clash against Rapid Vienna in Austria after the club decided not to appeal a ban imposed on them by UEFA.
UEFA ruled West Ham are not allowed to sell tickets to supporters for their away clash on November 25 following crowd disturbances in their last European outing against Genk.
European football’s governing body also hit West Ham with fine of €30,000 [around £25,444] for ‘crowd disturbances’ as well as an additional €4,500 [around £3,816] fine for the ‘throwing of objects’ by the travelling fans.
talkSPORT understands that as many as 150 ticketless West Ham fans managed to storm the turnstiles at the match in Belgium.
According to the Hammers’ official website, a full allocation of 1,700 tickets for the visit to the Allianz Stadion in the Austrian capital had already been sold out.
The east London club questioned UEFA’s ruling on Monday, however, talkSPORT understands that they’ve now changed their stance and will accept the charge as there’s ‘next to no defence’.
“UEFA have decided to ban West Ham fans from travelling to the Europa League match at Rapid Vienna next week – this was due to fan disturbances in the previous tie against Genk,” explained talkSPORT host Jim White.
“At the time, David Moyes was somewhat perturbed by this because he said reputationally they don’t want any more of this.
“Now, because of fan disturbances in Belgium for the tie against Genk, UEFA have said no more and no West Ham fans at the upcoming games at Rapid Vienna. So, no West Ham fans can be there.
“The big question was would West Ham, as a club, appeal that decision. We understand West Ham will not appeal the UEFA ban on their away fans for the trip to Rapid Vienna.
“The reason for that is we understand that this relates to West Ham recognising that up to 150 ticketless West Ham fans stormed the turnstiles over there.
“The club feels they have next to no defence against the charge that has been brought against them.”
However, the Evening Standard has suggested that decision may have been taken to avoid a potential ticket ban for the Hammers’ away trips in the knockout stage.
West Ham are top Europa League Group H, with the draw at Genk’s Luminus Arena earlier this month leaving them with ten points from a possible 12.
Fan trouble also flared when Rapid Vienna were beaten 2-0 at the London Stadium on October 30, leading to three arrests.
David Moyes’ Hammers, who sit third in the Premier League table ahead of Saturday’s trip to Wolves, complete the group stage of the European competition at home to Croatian side Dinamo Zagreb on December 9.
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