UEFA charge Ireland over tennis ball protest

REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

UEFA opened disciplinary proceedings against Ireland on Thursday after supporters hurled tennis balls onto the field during their European Championship qualifier against Georgia.

The match in Dublin on Tuesday was held up for up to three minutes as Ireland fans threw dozens of tennis balls in protest at chief executive John Delaney’s continued role at the Football Association of Ireland (FAI).

Delaney stood down as the FAI’s chief executive last week, days before he was due to appear before lawmakers over a 100,000 euro ($112,450) loan provided to the governing body.

However, the FAI created a new position of executive vice-president for Delaney, who will remain with the association he led since 2005.

The Irish FA could not be immediately reached for comment.

The case will be dealt with by the UEFA Control, Ethics and Disciplinary panel on May 16.

($1 = 0.8893 euros)

REUTERS/Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru, editing by Pritha Sarkar

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