Union Berlin - Maccabi Haifa

Europe: Europa Conference League
Union Berlin A. Voglsammer (33), K. Behrens (48), T. Awoniyi (76)
Olympiastadion Berlin3-0
Maccabi Haifa

Union and Haifa address anti-Semitic incidents: "Breaking down prejudices through congress and contact."

By Peter Vice

Union Berlin has issued an apology for isolated incidents of anti-semitism that took place at the UEFA European Conference League in Berlin's Olympiastadion on Thursday night. 

Supporters of visiting Maccabi Haifa and members of the German-Israeli youth league have also thanked the Union ultras who were not involved and showed solidarity with the affected fans. 

Article image
Photo: Seppalot13, CC BY-SA 3.0

The Charlottenburg police are currently investigating a number of unfortunate incidents that allegedly took place at the UEFA Europa Conference League match between 1. FC Union Berlin and Maccabi Haifa on Thursday evening.

Friday proved a rough day for German football enthusiasts as reports began to emerge that some Maccabi Haifa supporters were accosted by Union ultras. In response to an inquiry from Germany's associated press, the local police confirmed that they were investigating a number of incidents that took place at the stadium.

These included xenophobic remarks, thrown projectiles, and even an attempt to set fire to an Israeli flag. It has not been confirmed at this time if anyone was hurt during these confrontations.

"This behavior is shameful and not tolerable," Union President Dirk Zingler said in a statement, "We apologize to all those affected. Anti-Semitism is unfortunately still present in our society. It is important to remain vigilant against it. We will support the police investigation with all of the sources at our disposal."

It is important to note that there were more positive scenes on display at the Olympiastadion on Thursday. Many Union supporters jeered down the abuse and there were cheer exchanges between the ultra blocks.

"Thank you for the wave of solidarity showed online and to all the Union supporters who supported us in the stadium," the German-Israeli youth league noted in a released statement, "The majority of Union fans gave a friendly welcome to Maccabi and celebrated football with them."

The Israeli club itself accepted Union's apology and issued a preliminary welcome to the Union ultras ahead of the return leg.

"This is a good example of how to break through prejudices through congress and contact with each other," Zingler added, "Over 23,000 came together in a cordial atmosphere. Many of us had great meetings and conversations with our guests from Haifa and representatives of Jewish organizations and clubs in the lead up to the game yesterday."

Union Berlin
19Frederik Rønnow
28Christopher Trimmel (C)
5Marvin Friedrich
31Robin Knoche
23Niko Gießelmann
8Rani Khedira ↩82
27Sheraldo Becker ↩77
30Kevin Möhwald ↩72
24Genki Haraguchi
9Andreas Voglsammer ↩78
17Kevin Behrens ↩72
1Andreas Luthe
40Yannic Stein
10Max Kruse
14Taiwo Awoniyi ↪72
6Julian Ryerson ↪82
26Tymoteusz Puchacz ↪78
7Levin Öztunali ↪77
21Grischa Prömel ↪72
29Laurenz Dehl
35Fabio Schneider
Maccabi Haifa
44Josh Cohen
25Raz Meir
24Ori Dahan ↩46
5Bogdan Planić ↩80
55Rami Gershon
12Sun Menachem
7Omer Atzili ↩62
4Ali Muhammad ↩72
14José Rodríguez
10Tjaronn Chery (C)
11Godsway Donyoh ↩62
77Roei Fuchs
90Roei Mishpati
8Dolev Haziza ↪62
9Ben Sahar ↪62
21Dean David ↪46
3Sean Goldberg
15Ofri Arad ↪80
17Taleb Tawatha
18Yuval Ashkenazi
26Mahmoud Jaber ↪72
33Maor Levi

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