Belfast Telegraph

Linfield to make thugs who kicked off at Celtic game pay

By Jonathan Bell

Linfield are to go after the football hooligans who caused the club to be fined €10,000 (£8,964).

The Blues were also hit with a partial stadium closure for their next European tie over the missile throwing and pitch invasion by yobs during the Celtic game.

In a statement Windsor Park officials said the "tiny number of individuals" involved would pay for the fine.

"Linfield FC shares the frustration of the vast majority of our many loyal and genuine supporters who have been rightly appalled by this negative and unwelcome behaviour and the punitive sanction it has attracted," the statement said.

"The club is co-operating fully with the PSNI over possible prosecutions and will seek financial redress from any identified individuals through the civil courts."

Missiles were thrown at Hoops hero Leigh Griffiths during the first leg of the tie at Windsor Park.

Griffiths knotted a Celtic scarf to a goalpost after the final whistle in last Friday's game, and he also enraged Blues fans with hand gestures referencing a 5-1 victory over Rangers.

The Scotland striker was booked for lifting a Buckfast bottle off the park after being targeted with missiles.

That booking contributed to a fine of £4,037 for Celtic after an improper conduct charge was automatically triggered when they received five yellow cards in the game.

Griffiths received a one-match ban for provoking spectators. Celtic were also hit with fresh charges on Thursday for an illicit banner displayed at Parkhead on Wednesday night's return leg.

They have also been cited for a kit infringement and blocked stairways in the stands following their 4-0 victory. Uefa said that the illicit banner charge related to a banner "portraying a person in a paramilitary uniform". That case will be dealt with by Uefa on July 28.

Celtic condemned the banner, which was displayed in the section of Celtic Park frequented by the club's Green Brigade 'ultras'.

A club statement read: "Any support for a paramilitary or proscribed terrorist organisation has no place at Celtic Park.

"The club has been consistent in condemning such conduct on the very few occasions in the past when it has occurred at Celtic Park.

"It is unfortunate that such a small minority of the crowd at Celtic Park behaved in such a way.

"We know that the Celtic support will join us in condemning such behaviour."

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