Dutch FA to investigate ‘chaotic’ stadium issues

Scenes outside the De Kuip stadium in Rotterdam. Image supplied by AONISC
Scenes outside the De Kuip stadium in Rotterdam. Image supplied by AONISC
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The Dutch football association has said it will investigate claims from Northern Ireland fans about a “chaotic” and “dangerous” situation outside the De Kuip Stadium in Rotterdam on Thursday.

The Amalgamation of Official Northern Ireland Supporters Clubs (AONISC) had asked the Irish FA to make an official complaint with their counterparts in the Netherlands over issues at the stadium ahead of a Euro 2020 qualifying clash on Thursday.

AONISC chairman Gary McAllister said many fans were “crowded into a confined area” before the match, and some were forced to miss the beginning of the big game.

“The scenes outside the stadium on Thursday night were not only chaotic, they were dangerous and had the potential to become much more serious,” Mr McAllister said.

“Fans were directed to the wrong entrance by stewards who appeared ill informed. After queuing for some time, they were then sent to another set of turnstiles at a different part of the stadium. This led to several hundred fans being crowded into a confined area, which caused considerable anxiety.

“There were also issues with the scanning of tickets, which added to the problem. This was not a case of fans arriving late at the stadium, as many people were there more than an hour before kick-off. “

He added: “I have contacted the Irish Football Association this morning and asked that an official complaint is made to the KNVB (Royal Dutch Football Federation). We will also be working with our colleagues in the Football Supporters Europe network to raise the issue with UEFA.”

A KNVB spokesperson told the BBC: “We take this very seriously. We (will) start an investigation.”

The match ended 3-1 to the Netherlands.