The information session in the town hall on Tuesday evening was intended to clarify councilors' decision about the Belgian choice. do not allow supporters.
There was a lot of criticism of the mayor's decision, of supporters, but also from FC Twente and AZ. After the return match in Brussels, Thursday last week, where the Antwerp supporters were wrong, Van der Kraan picked up the phone to call Van Veldhuizen and agree with him. The police also indicated again during the meeting that they fully supported the choice. The choice was made weeks ago based on the information that there was about the possible disturbances between rival supporters in Enschede.
There was no really fierce criticism from the council. Many questions. What consequences would it have had if the Belgian supporters were allowed to come. Whether or not 'yes' was said too quickly to the KNVB's request. Why no longer waited with the choice to keep the supporters out. There were only four days between the request and the consent.
But waiting longer was not possible, police chief Marleen Abbes said. "Then we could not have prepared this job properly." According to Abbes, twice as many agents would have been needed if supporters from Antwerp were allowed to come. Now the stakes were decent too, 150 ME employees were on their feet. "The social costs are evident," according to the mayor.
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How the choice of supporters came about was made clear to the council members via a detailed timeline, from the request of the KNVB on August 16 to the day of the match. In the end, the police asked the mayor for an emergency order, so that Belgians who were on the way to the stadium could be summoned to leave more easily. The police and the municipality deliberately chose not to make public that an emergency order had been issued, in order to prevent unrest.
At least two hundred people have been asked to leave the city, Abbes reported. Sixty supporters were found in a pub in Germany by the police. They then watched the game at the request of the police officers.
Van der Kraan initially ruled that it would not be too bad with the disturbances. "We thought that if we had the fans in the stadium, they would not be able to cause unrest outside it. But because of the match in Brussels, where a lot happened, we came to the conclusion, together with AZ, that the mayor had a very visionary look has had. "
At a subsequent call, the director will still be scratching his head if FC Twente wants to cooperate. "I will not say 'yes' spontaneously anymore, because the consequences will go very far. But banning competitions because of misbehaved supporters is really the wrong signal."
The reason for the misconduct of the supporters was the second red card for Antwerp. That card was given to the goal scorer of the player who shortly before had given Antwerp a 0-1 lead. He was sent off the field because he celebrated his goal too exuberantly. He hung in the fences of one of the supporters' compartments. After that the atmosphere became grim.
Much criticism of the mayor also came from the local football support. On Facebook Vak-P calls the mayor a paljas and a silly person. "De Grolsch Veste has a special branch with European capacity. This is even wider than the branch in Alkmaar. If it had been offered for a bus combination for Antwerp, it would not have been all that complicated. Panic football on a political level. Like an away club itself determines how many supporters they take with them and travel there ", Vak-P writes on Facebook.
In April Vak-P called on supporters of FC Twente to travel en masse to Amsterdam to build a party around the champion duel that FC Twente would play against Ajax at the Ajax training complex De Toekomst. The branch at the Future only offers 186 supporters of the visiting club. Eventually, an exodus of thousands of supporters threatened to Amsterdam, banning the match between Young Ajax and FC Twente.
Mayor Van Veldhuizen could not say whether, with the experience gained during the AZ - Antwerp game, he would not give permission at all for a duel between two 'strange clubs' in De Grolsch Veste next time. He will look at that on a case-by-case basis. What certainly played a role in the decision to have AZ play in Enschede is that the roof of De Grolsch Veste collapsed eight years ago. According to Van Veldhuizen, Enschede and FC Twente have demonstrated their commitment.