Nobody should fear for their safety when attending a football match. Young and old should be able to enjoy a live match with fellow and opposition supporters without any threat of violence. The old ways of traveling hooligans have mostly been eradicated but across Europe many fans still look at a trip to a far away city as a chance to raise a little hell under the banner of ultra-support for their club. It’s unacceptable. In this situation, it’s an embarrassment for AS Roma but any club could be staring down the barrel of violent consequences. People are out there, supporting all clubs who use football as an outlet for their anger.
Sean Cox is a Liverpool supporter in critical condition right now because of a violent attack on him just before Liverpool and Roma kicked off the Champions League semi-final first leg at Anfield. Suspects are in custody and there’s always hope with these things that a watershed moment has been reached and that enough press is given to the event that it deters future cruelty. But in the present there’s a man in hospital who needs your positive vibrations.
“I think the game on Tuesday night showed the beauty of the game, during the game, and showed the most ugly face of parts of the game before the game,” said Klopp.
“When I heard [for the] first time about it I cannot describe my emotions in English, to be honest. It was how it feels still, that it should never have happened. It should never have happened before and it should never happen in the future, and we all have to do everything to make sure that things like that will not happen anymore. It’s obviously not the solution for it, probably nobody has that.
“It’s just unbelievable that something like this can happen. How you can imagine, we all are, with all our thoughts and prayers, with Sean and his family at the moment.”
Security will be tight at Roma for the second leg after the Merseyside incident. And rightly so, as there will be worry about retaliation and there will be worry about the safety of every fan heading to the Stadio Olimpico. Police presence will be high and while Jürgen can’t imagine how being decent to other people isn’t “common sense,” he offered some advice to potential troublemakers.
“Behave,” Klopp said. “Behave like you want to be treated if you are alone in the street. You want to be safe.
“I really don’t like that part of football. I can’t get it.
“It’s a wonderful game and as long as we want to have the game like this, that we can have away supporters in our stadium and then we can be away supporters in other stadiums we have to show our responsibility, we have to show that we understand and I really hope that everyone is in that mood.”