Kanjuruhan Stadium: Football world mourns victims of stadium crush in Indonesia


FIFA, the head of football’s international governing body, has led football’s mourning over Saturday’s stadium crash during an Indonesian football match, describing the incident, which killed at least 125 people, as a “dark day” and a “dark day”. incomprehensible tragedy”.

In what is one of the world’s deadliest stadium disasters ever, more than 300 people have been injured, according to Indonesian authorities, fearing the death toll could rise.

“I express my deepest condolences to the families and friends of the victims who lost their lives after this tragic incident,” FIFA President Gianni Infantino said in a statement.

“Together with FIFA and the global football community, all our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims, those who have been injured, along with the people of the Republic of Indonesia, the Asian Football Association, the Indonesian Football Association and the Indonesian Football Association. League, in this difficult time,” he said.

FIFA chief Gianni Infantino paid tribute to the dead at Kanjuruhan Stadium.

Supporters of Arema FC and rival Persebaya Surbaya, two of Indonesia’s biggest football teams, clashed in the stands after home team Arema FC were defeated 3-2 in a game in the city of Malang in East Java, police said .

Supporters of the losing team then “invaded” the field and police fired tear gas, sparking a fan crush that led to choking, East Java police chief Nico Afinta said at a press conference after the event.

Two police officers were also among the dead, the police chief said, adding that the crush took place as fans fled to an exit gate.

Football clubs around the world pay tribute to the dead.

Spain’s La Liga announced in a statement that a minute’s silence will be observed at the five games scheduled for Sunday and Monday, as well as the 10 games next week, as many English Premier League clubs pay their own tribute to the victims. tweet about the disaster. .

Liverpool FC, which suffered a tragedy in 1989 when 96 of its supporters died at the Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield, was one of them.

“We are deeply saddened to hear of the events at Kanjuruhan Stadium, Malang, Indonesia. The thoughts of everyone at Liverpool Football Club are with all concerned at this time,” Liverpool tweeted.

“We are deeply saddened to learn of the events in Malang at Kanjuruhan Stadium Indonesia today. Along with everyone who finds a connection through football, our thoughts are with everyone affected by this tragedy,” England club Arsenal tweeted.

Indonesian security officers stop a fan on the field.

Meanwhile, Gilang Widya Pramana, the chairman of the host team Arema FC, apologized in a statement on the club’s website.

“As the chairman of Arema FC, I apologize to all the residents of Malang who have been affected by this incident. I am deeply concerned and condemn the riots in Kanjuruhan Stadium that left more than 100 people dead,” he said.

“I feel deep sorrow and condolences for the Aremania who were victims of the Kanjuruhan disaster, I hope the bereaved will be given courage,” he added.

Gilang said he has instructed Arema FC’s management to coordinate with the health center treating the victims and expressed his full support for the ongoing police investigation.

“We also fully support the investigation by the police and ask the parties to exercise restraint until a clear point of the problem is found,” he said.

The Indonesian Football Association (PSSI) has suspended all matches next week and banned Arema FC from organizing matches for the rest of the season.

Indonesia will host the FIFA Under-20 World Cup next year and will bid for the Asian Cup in 2023.

Asian Football Confederation President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa said in a statement: “I am deeply shocked and saddened to hear such tragic news coming from football-loving Indonesia and, on behalf of the AFC and Asian football family, send I extend our heartfelt condolences to the families and friends of the victims as we extend our speedy recovery wishes to the fans injured in the incident and our support to the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI) and the clubs.”

“The thoughts and prayers of the Asian football family are with the football family of Indonesia during this very difficult moment,” he added.

Located in East Java, Kanjuruhan Stadium is mainly used for football matches, with an estimated capacity of 38,000 spectators.

But according to ministry officials, 42,000 tickets have been issued for Saturday’s game.

“We expected the (large) numbers and suggested that the match be held in the afternoon instead, but it continued into the evening,” Indonesia’s security minister, Mahfud MD, said in a statement posted on his official website. social media accounts was shared.

He added that the stadium was “filled beyond its maximum capacity”.

“Our proposals were not accepted. I also want to emphasize that supporters were in the field of Arema FC.”

There have been previous outbreaks of trouble at matches in Indonesia, with strong rivalry between clubs sometimes leading to violence among supporters.

“All the sports clubs (in Indonesia) competing between the cities are always intense,” Indonesian football analyst Dex Glenniza told CNN, noting that it was “banned” for Arema and Persebaya supporters to visit each other’s stadiums.

“(This is) to avoid friction and clashes between supporters,” he said. “But there are still many incidents between the supporters, most of them off the pitch.”

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