Real Madrid have questioned Uefa’s decision to hold the Champions League final at the Stade de France and called for answers on the chaotic scenes outside before kick-off.
The European governing body announced on Tuesday a comprehensive and independent review would be established to examine the access issues that led to fans being crushed and tear-gassed outside the stadium last Saturday.
Uefa initially blamed the late arrival of fans for the problems before later issuing a statement referring to fake tickets as the cause.
French government ministers reiterated the latter claims, alleging “fraud at an industrial level” leading to the fiasco that followed.
Although it was Liverpool fans that were mainly affected, some Real Madrid supporters were caught up in the mayhem as well, leading to the Spanish club – that won the final 1-0 – to release a damning statement on Friday.
It read: “In light of the unfortunate events which took place on May 28 in the surroundings of and at access points to the Stade de France, and even inside the stadium itself, Real Madrid CF wishes to express the following in defence of our fans, who were victim to said events:
“We would like to know the reasons which led to this venue being chosen to host the final and the criteria used, taking into account the experiences of the day.
“Furthermore, we call for answers and explanations in order to determine those responsible for leaving the fans abandoned and defenceless. Fans who in general terms showed exemplary conduct at all times.
Pogba weighing offers from PSG, Real Madrid with future still to be decided
Juventus are front-runners for Pogba but the player is yet to make a final decision
Paul Pogba is prepared to wait before making a final decision over returning to Juventus and is set to consider proposals from Paris Saint-Germain and Real Madrid before finalising his next club.
The France midfielder, 29, officially left Manchester United as a free agent earlier this week and Juve have made the early running for him to come back to the club after leaving in 2016 for a Premier League record £89million.
While the Italians are frontrunners for Pogba, PSG and Real Madrid are still in the race and he is understood to be in no rush to make a decision on where he will play next season after six years in England.
Pogba has spent time in America since the end of the season and his heel injury that ruled him out for the final part of the campaign means he is not currently with the France squad on UEFA Nations League duty. But he has until next month before pre-season starts at clubs, giving him time to consider his options.
Tomori has embraced life in Italy, resulting in a Serie A title and now his sights are set on the World Cup with England
As a place to learn the art of defending, there can be no better school for Fikayo Tomori than AC Milan. Paolo Maldini stalks the touchline of Milanello pitches and Franco Baresi strolls around on match days at the San Siro. Then there is the presence of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, a legendary striker rather than defender, injured for most of this title-winning season but giving detailed instructions in the dressing room.
“He was always talking before the game, walking up and down and talking, talking and talking,” says Tomori. When first called up for England three years ago, there was little indication that Tomori would become a centre-back in the grizzled Italian mould. But, after 18 months in Serie A, he has become streetwise in the methods perfected by the likes of Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci.
Tomori started as an Erasmus student on loan before Milan took up their option to sign him from Chelsea. He embraced the culture, learning the language to the point where he is thinking in Italian. “Now we only speak Italian. It’s not perfect yet, and I’m still learning, but it’s part of the experience,” Tomori said. “I get to hear the swear words all the time! Sometimes in the changing rooms, I find myself thinking in Italian instead of English. Being in the changing room is easier than having a tutor, just because everyone is talking. In the showers, in the changing room, on the pitch. You just pick things up.”