UEFA bans Beşiktaş fans' banner for anarchism reference before key Arsenal game
The banner stated 'La vittoria sara nostra,' meaning 'Victory will be ours' in Italian.
Turkish football giant Beşiktaş faces a crisis ahead of its match with Arsenal tonight, after UEFA officials removed a number of banners of the fan group Çarşı from the Atatürk Olympic Stadium.
The reason given is that the letter “A” in the group's logo symbolizes anarchism and implies a political message.
A gigantic, record-breaking banner that took days to produce by Beşiktaş fans is among a number of banners confiscated by UEFA officials.
This is not the first banner incident for Çarşı and Beşiktaş. In 2009, prior to a match with yet another British team, Manchester United, Çarşı’s banners were confiscated for the same reason. After this decision, the club's supporters and members of the group offered to cover or modify the letter with spray paint, which was rejected by UEFA officials.
Çarşı is known as one of the most politicized football fan groups in Turkey, and was one of the most prominent elements in the Gezi Park protests last year.