Who is responsible? After the violent incidents of the Nice-Cologne match, everyone blames themselves

Who is responsible?  After the violent incidents of the Nice-Cologne match, everyone blames themselves

In the aftermath of the attack by German hooligans, associated with former members of Supras Auteuil, a group of Parisian ultras dissolved in 2010, at the Allianz Riviera, Jean-Pierre Rivère had great difficulty in masking his anger.

In a nice balancing act, the president of Nice did everything not to point the finger at the many errors made by the authorities who made these surreal scenes possible,sudden and extreme violenceand a staggering record of 32 injuries, all for a Europa League Conference match between Nice and Cologne.

“It’s fed up. When you live it live, it’s terrible, reacted on Friday Jean-Pierre Rivère. When you relive it the next morning a second time in hindsight, it’s even worse. The pictures are terrible. This is no longer possible. Football is a sport, a game, we welcome families, children…”, he commented when 8,000 German supporters were present.

“It’s no longer bearable. We don’t have the legal right not to sell tickets. But compared to what happened, we wonder what we’re going to do next. Quit to have sanctions and welcome fewer supporters”,

The president of OGC Nice was still in shock on Friday. Photo Sebastien Botella.

When the City of Nice recalls the role of the prefect and the State…

If Rivère took care not to accuse anyone, the first deputy of Nice, Anthony Borre clears itself of all responsibility and insisted that the City does not “could not be held jointly responsible”. He recalls that “the security of national and international sporting events is the responsibility of the State”.

“During such events, the municipal police mainly deal with traffic. Maintaining order is absolutely not part of their remit. The state has mobile companies, CRS, for that. elsewhere what these companies tried to do on Thursday night.”

…who does not hesitate to charge the Nice and German clubs

On the side of the prefect of the Alpes-Maritimes Bernard Gonzalez, it is estimated that “Until an hour before the match, the situation was held despite a few clashes”.

The latter did not hesitate to charge the club, the lack of training of the Nice stewards, the German coaching and to clear himself of any responsibility.

The alleged lightness of filtering? “Filtering, palpation, is the responsibility of the club. At the top of the west and north stairs, we had CRS. I remind you that the responsibility inside the stadium is that of the club”.

The stewards? “They were quickly overwhelmed. Some left, others reacted as best they could. It’s a profession that needs to be better supervised, better trained, more homogeneous.”

And the sharing of information with the German club?

From the beginning, the club’s determination to work together with us has been quite limited. We discovered on D-Day a much larger number of buses than announced, gathering places that were not those planned.

The prefect of the Alpes-Maritimes Bernard Gonzalez. Photo Cyril Dodergny.

The Allianz Riviera? It’s “Open Bar”

If the actors are numerous in this story, there must also be a unity of place: in this case the Allianz Riviera, which hosted the meeting. “We have a stadium which is a magnificent tool, but we have a very high security complexity”, explained, tone great, Jean-Pierre Rivère, the president of Nice.

In this stadium, apart from the visitor parking lot which is a bit hermetic, everything else is “open bar”. We are told that this stadium cannot be sectorized. If he was, we would make things more secure.

An opinion shared by the prefect of the Alpes-Maritimes. “What you have to see is that our stadium is absolutely not suitable for organizing matches of this level. It’s a friendly stadium, but there should be partitioning and sectors that we can isolate. As long as we don’t have that, the club can be surprised. I demand that this stadium be secure! It will be when there is a sectorization, and plexiglass to separate the supporters. “

“What happens in the stadium or around the stadium is not our responsibility. The mayor was there, alongside the prefect and the public prosecutor. From the first incidents, Christian Estrosi asked for the cancellation of meeting. But, again, this decision is not ours”emphasizes Anthony Borré.

The kick-off of the match was delayed by 55 minutes due to serious incidents in the stadium. Last night, the operator of the Allianz Riviera cleared itself of all responsibility. Photo Sebastien Botella.

As a reminder, this enclosure does not belong to OGC Nice, nor to the town hall. It is operated by NES, Nice Eco Stadium, a subsidiary of the Vinci group. The latter split a press release.

To answer questions about the lack of sectorization of the stands, which allowed the attack of German and Parisian hooligans, the operator recalled that this enclosure had been built “according to a program set by the city of Nice, owner of the equipment, in line with UEFA’s requirements for hosting Euro 2016.” It therefore only responded to a specification.

NES continues: OGC Nice did not formulate “no written or oral request to change the sectoring of the stands”, in the same way as the city of Nice or the Prefecture of the Alpes-Maritimes.

NES is available to stakeholders to examine the conditions under which adjustments could possibly be made, as was the case for the installation of safety nets in the stands.

These had been installed after the famous Nice-OM in August 2021 and the throwing of a bottle at Dimitri Payet.

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