Violence causes abandonment
Riot police required in Genoa as Euro qualifier is halted
By Nadia Carminati. Last Updated: October 13, 2010 8:05am
Riot police attempt to control fans
The Euro 2012 qualifier between Italy and Serbia on Tuesday night was abandoned after just six minutes due to crowd trouble in Genoa.
Kick-off in the Group C match was delayed by 35 minutes as a result of Serbian fans throwing flares onto the pitch and lighting fireworks.
Once play began, Serbian fans again began to cause trouble and referee
Craig Thomson stopped the game.
The match was then completely abandoned, with Italy expected to be awarded a 3-0 win, much to the annoyance of the Serbian Football Association.
Italy coach Cesare Prandelli told reporters: "We're not playing, I've never seen anything like this before."
Emiliano Viviano, Italy keeper, told Rai tv: "We are sorry. It's not normal for a football game.
"I've seen (Serbia captain Dejan) Stankovic crying. I couldn't stay in the goal and check the Serbian supporters wouldn't hit me with firecrackers.
"Fear? I wouldn't talk about fear, but I wouldn't like to be hit by a firecracker"
The teams originally came out and began to line up for the national anthems but then were sent back into the changing rooms as police in riot gear came out to confront the fans.
A few fans with their heads covered climbed up onto a partition, took out tools and began cutting through a mesh fence. Glass partitions were also broken.
Eventually the teams came back out and Serbia fans whistled and booed throughout their national anthem but the game began before be abandoned.
Antonello Valentini of the Italian Federation General Affairs told Rai tv: "The match has been definitively stopped, after a referee decision. He told us that he took this decision due to the fact that there was not the security conditions to play.
"Now the Uefa delegate will have to do his job and then we will see. We don't want to talk about what could be the possible decisions"