UEFA has launched an investigation against Turkish football club Fenerbahce over its supporters chanting Russian president Vladimir Putin’s name during a game against their Ukrainian opponents.
A section of supporters of Fenerbahce started chanting Putin’s name after conceding a goal at home to Dynamo Kyiv, a Ukrainian side, in their Champions League qualifier as a taunt to the war-ridden country prompting swift action from UEFA.
Vitaliy Buyalskyi scored for the visitors in the 57th minute and his celebrations were met with the reverberating chants of “Vladimir Putin” by many Fenerbahce fans which drew immediate condemnation from the footballing community.
The game ended 1-1 after 90 minutes but Kyiv knocked out Fenerbahce with a 114th-minute winner by Oleksandr Karavaev.
UEFA is now investigating the incident and announced that an “Ethics and Disciplinary Inspector will conduct a disciplinary investigation regarding alleged misbehavior of Fenerbahce supporters” at the Dynamo Kyiv match, adding further information would be made available later.
Russia raided Ukraine on Feb. 24, calling it a “special military operation” to rid Ukraine of fascists, an assertion the Ukrainian government and its Western allies said was a baseless pretext for an unprovoked war.
Their attack resulted in Russian clubs and international football teams receiving a ban from the European and World competitions including the World Cup in Qatar later this year.
In a statement on Thursday, Fenerbahce said the chants made by “some” fans did not represent the club, its position, or its views, adding that it stood firmly against the war in Ukraine.