UEFA charge FA and Serbian FA

  • Last Updated: October 17 2012, 19:29 BST

The Football Association have raised the prospect of a future boycott of matches in Serbia as a bitter row blew up over the alleged racist treatment of England's Under-21 side.

Danny Rose was sent off in the melee in Serbia

The FA's general secretary Alex Horne urged UEFA to take the strongest action against the Serbian FA and questioned whether England teams would play in the country again.

UEFA have announced charges against both the Serbian FA and the English, for improper conduct of their players, and against the Serbs for "alleged racist chanting" by fans.

Danny Rose, the Tottenham defender on loan at Sunderland, claims he was targeted by racist chanting during the match, but the Serbian FA issued a statement "absolutely" denying there was any racism at all and branding the England player's behaviour "vulgar".

The FA have sent UEFA a full dossier of evidence, including video footage and a catalogue of incidents which they reported to match officials during and after the match.

Horne said in a statement: "We were shocked and appalled by the disgraceful events that occurred in Serbia last night.

"Our players and staff were subjected to racial abuse, violence as well as missiles being thrown at them throughout the match. What occurred is inexcusable and not acceptable.

"We call on UEFA to take the strongest possible action against the Serbian FA, their supporters and anyone found guilty of being involved in the numerous instances of violence and abuse.

"We have also been in contact with UEFA's senior executives to express our deep concern at this matter.

"It is also clear that we must defend Danny Rose, who was sent off due to the frustration of being a target of racial abuse.

"FA officials made UEFA officials aware of racist abuse from sections of the crowd aimed at a number of England's black players at half-time on Tuesday evening.

"This matter was discussed again during a meeting with UEFA after those disgraceful scenes which followed the final whistle.

"No football team should be asked to play in any environment where racial abuse, violence and threatening behaviour is prevalent. We must question the validity of sending a team to Serbia in the future."

However the Serbian FA statement, which they translated into English, denies that their fans were guilty of "any occurrences of racism", and said the controversy was isolated to the final minutes of the match.

"The FA of Serbia absolutely refuses [sic] and denies that there were any occurrences of racism before and during the match at the stadium in Krusevac.

"Making connection between the seen incident - a fight between members of the two teams - and racism has absolutely no ground and we consider it to be a total malevolence.

"Unfortunately, after the fourth minute of the additional time and the victory goal scored by the guest team, unpleasant scenes were seen on the pitch.

"And while most of the English team players celebrated the score, their player number three, Danny Rose, behaved in [an] inappropriate, unsportsmanlike and vulgar manner towards the supporters on the stands at the stadium in Krusevac, and for that he was shown a red card."

Both associations have had UEFA disciplinary charges launched over the behaviour of their players at the end of the stormy encounter which saw violent scenes after the final whistle.

UEFA said in a statement: "UEFA has opened disciplinary proceedings against both the Football Association of Serbia (FSS) and England's Football Association (FA) following a number of incidents during and after England's 1-0 win over Serbia in the 2013 UEFA European Under-21 Championship play-off second leg at the Mladost stadium in Krusevac on Tuesday 16 October 2012.

"Regarding alleged racist chanting, UEFA will instigate proceedings against the FSS over the misconduct of their supporters during and at the end of the match. Proceedings will also be instigated against the FSS for the improper conduct of the Serbia players at the end of the match.

"UEFA will also commence proceedings against the FA for the improper conduct of the England players at the end of the match."

The cases will be dealt with at a meeting of UEFA's control and disciplinary Body on November 22.

The Serbian FA did issue an apology for the way their players and staff confronted members of the England party, saying: "Football Association of Serbia apologises to the guests from England and the overall football community because of the unsportsmanlike behaviour of a part of the technical staff and players of the Serbian U-21 team.

"By this we inform the overall public that we will, as a matter of urgency, start an internal disciplinary procedure and punish the culprits after reviewing all the reports.

"To be honest, we expect the same investigation from the English FA."

Hugh Robertson, the sports minister, has written to UEFA's president, Michel Platini, demanding the "strongest possible sanctions".

Stuart Pearce's team won Tuesday night's play-off 1-0 (2-0 on aggregate) to qualify for the finals in Israel next year.

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