Bosnia-Herzegovina and Poland fined for serious crowd disturbances
© AFP

FIFA has fined the Football Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina CHF 50,000 following the qualifying match between Belgium and Bosnia-Herzegovina in Genk on 29 March 2009. Between 45 and 50 fireworks were set off by the Bosnian supporters, with a large number landing on the pitch. The match had to be interrupted for eight minutes and the teams sent back to the changing rooms. A Bosnian supporter also invaded the pitch during the game. 

In addition, the Polish Football Association has been fined CHF 25,000 following Poland’s qualifying match away to Northern Ireland on 28 March 2009. Polish supporters set off a number of fireworks at the beginning of the match, five of which were thrown onto the pitch. Later in the same match, police had to enter one of the Polish supporters´ areas of the stadium and had various objects thrown at them.

These decisions were taken by the FIFA Disciplinary Committee, which met in Zurich on Thursday, 7 May and heard a number of cases following 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ preliminary competition matches at the end of March and beginning of April.

Both Bosnia-Herzegovina and Poland have been warned as to their future conduct. Should incidents of such gravity occur again, harsher sanctions, such as a points deduction or elimination of the representative team from a respective tournament, will be imposed by the FIFA Disciplinary Committee.

Finally, the Hellenic Football Federation has been fined CHF 25,000 after lasers were used and political banners displayed by Greek supporters at their home qualifying fixture against Israel on 1 April 2009.

Following the meeting of FIFA´s Stadium and Security Committee on 21 April, the committee unanimously supported the proposal from the FIFA President that where there are confirmed cases of security issues, the kick-off of forthcoming matches should be delayed. The match commissioner and referees should therefore not start a match unless security is established outside the stadium and spectators have taken their seats.

These measures will be in place for the next round of 2010 FIFA World Cup™ preliminary competition fixtures on 6 June.