UEFA have issued warning to Arsenal fans over possible waves of protest during next week’s Europa League final in Azerbaijan.
Officials will be on the lookout for any anti-UEFA banners in Baku as well as listening out for chants.
Both Arsenal and Chelsea fans are furious and disappointed with UEFA as they face many difficulties concerning travelling to Baku.
Earlier it has been revealed that Arsenal and Chelsea are planning to return a total of over 6.000 tickets – more than half their initial allocations – as they have only sold 3.500 and 2.000 respectively. So the final could be played in a half-empty stadium.
Besides, Arsenal fans are furious that Armenian international Henrikh Mkhitaryan will not travel with the squad for their clash with Chelsea on May 29. due to concerns about his safety. UEFA have a history of charging clubs for provocative messages and will not hesitate to do the same to Arsenal.
After the news that Mkhitaryan will not travel, because of political tensions between Armenia and Azerbaijan, many fans have called for protests or even a boycott. UEFA had assured Mkhitaryan of his safety but Arsenal felt it was not worth the risk.
in a candid interview, in which he also admitted Arsenal had made an error with their handling of Aaron Ramsey’s contract talks, head of football Raul Sanllehi said: ‘Fortunately the image of Arsenal is strong enough. When Arsenal knocks on the door it’s a different knock than other clubs.
“We’re getting a lot from players that we’re talking to, that they really get that it’s a very good place to be, Arsenal, in order to project a good football career. Really, I feel like I have a lot of ammunition when I talk with players.”
Sanllehi said: “We had to be responsible for ourselves and protect the interests of Arsenal. We realised we were going to cause an imbalance that would have been harmful for the team’s sake in the medium and longer term.”
He added: “The position of the club, of losing a player of the quality — not only the football quality but the human quality and club identification — of Aaron, we have to avoid that. It’s not correct for us.”