Posted on Apr 27
Italian police are investigating a dozen Genoa fans after a spate of match violence which will see the relegation-threatened Serie A side play two of their remaining four league games in an empty stadium.
Around 300 supporters were involved in the fracas at the Luigi Ferraris de Marassi stadium, forcing the intervention of police and security officials and prompting the decision to delay the match until order was restored.
Police later used security images to identify the main culprits, some of whom, according to Italian sports daily Gazzetta dello sport, are leaders of hardcore 'Ultras' groups.
Around a dozen of the supporters are set to be charged with football-related violence following Genoa's 4-1 home defeat on Sunday.
The violence kicked off while Genoa were trailing 4-0. Around 300 fans left the north stand behind the Genoa goal for a neighbouring stand and began hurling abuse at players and throwing missiles and flares on to the pitch.
The incidents forced a 45-minute interruption and produced scenes which caused an uproar in Italy.
Earlier this week public prosecutors in Genoa confirmed that 11 supporters had been issued with five-year stadium bans, none of which related to the 12 fans currently being investigated.
Genoa have also been ordered by Italian league bosses to play their next two matches behind closed doors, meaning they will play in empty stadiums against Cagliari on May 2 and Palermo for their final match of the season on May 13.
The measure could ultimately hamper their bid to beat the drop. Genoa are 17th, only one point ahead of Lecce, who sit third from last in 18th.
Genoa's defeat also cost coach Alberto Malesani his job. He is set to be replaced Monday by Luigi De Canio, who will be the club's fourth coach of the season.