PAOK And Rapid Vienna Fans Engage In All-Out Flare Warfare Prior To Europe League Soccer Game (Video)

flare fireworks war between soccer fans in greece

The Europa League may just be the little brother of the Champions League—a consolation tournament for all the European soccer clubs who finished 3rd and 4th in their respective leagues—but don’t tell that to fans of Greece’s PAOK FC or Austria’s SK Rapid Wien.

On Thursday night, before these two clubs faced off in a Europa League match at Toumba Stadium in Thessalonica, Greece, groups of supporters from both teams got into a pretty nasty confrontation. And by “pretty nasty confrontation,” I mean an all-out flare attack that made the stadium look like a warzone.

It all started when, out of the blue, fans of Rapid Vienna unleashed a pyrotechnic attack of flares and fireworks into the adjacent section of PAOK fans. Then, the PAOK fans who were bold enough not to flee launched a counter-attack of their own.

See for yourself:

I knew soccer fans could be a little rowdy, but who knew they could get this nuts before the game even started?

In any case, Rapid Vienna isn’t just going to stand by while their fans take all the heat for this confrontation. They recently released a statement to Reuters in which they claim that PAOK fans “welcomed the Rapid supporters with almost unimaginable hatred,” and that “bricks, pyrotechnic objects and benches were thrown and even two Molotov cocktails, which detonated a few metres from the bus and blew a crater in the asphalt.”

So we’ll have to see what UEFA wants to do about this situation.

Oh, and in case you’re wondering, mirculously, no one was seriously injured in this mele, nor were there any arrests. And they did end up playing a soccer game—PAOK beat Rapid 2-1.

Hat Tip – [Dirty Tackle]

Tags: Europa League, flares, Soccer, soccer fans,