Tragic Fatality of AEK Fan Follows Confrontation with Dinamo Zagreb Supporters in New Philadelphia

Tragic Fatality of AEK Fan Follows Confrontation with Dinamo Zagreb Supporters in New Philadelphia

A sombre cloud descended upon New Philadelphia as the aftermath of a violent encounter involving Dinamo Zagreb fans unfolded on Monday night, August 7th, 2023. Regrettably, one AEK fan has lost their life after these distressing events.

The AEK supporter who tragically passed away was among the group handed over to the Red Cross, a collective of fellow "yellow and black" enthusiasts. Sustaining grave injuries from a knife attack, his condition deteriorated, and by the early hours of Tuesday, August 8th, 2023, he succumbed to his wounds. This shocking incident occurred amidst preparations for the football match between the two teams at the OPAP Arena.

According to reports, a big group of around 150-200 Dinamo supporters descended on Athens by road on Monday night, flouting a ban imposed on visitors from Croatia over fears of precisely the kind of clashes that took place.

Police put the motorcade under discreet surveillance but lost track of the Croatian fans when they left the touring buses they arrived on and made their way to AEK’s OPAP Arena by car and train. There, they reportedly attacked home team supporters who had been hanging out at the cafes and bars around the stadium, where AEK and Dinamo had held a practice earlier.

According to reports, the Dinamo fans were also joined by several supporters of Athens’ Panathinaikos club.

Simultaneously, the training sessions of both teams had concluded at the AEK stadium, with the Dinamo Zagreb delegation escorted to their hotel under police protection. The AEK officials locked down the stadium as a precaution.

The orchestrated Dinamo Zagreb organizers, joined by PAO fans, swiftly converged outside the stadium around 11:00 PM, launching an attack on AEK fans who were present in the local cafes. A fierce altercation erupted, featuring Molotov cocktails, bats, and various objects as weapons. Prompt intervention by robust MAT forces ensued, quelling the disturbances using chemical means.

Subsequently, arrests were made, with those involved apprehended and transported to Security for questioning. The aim is to identify the individual responsible for the stabbing and to elucidate the case's details, thereby preparing a comprehensive case file. The detainees are to be brought before the prosecutor for further legal proceedings.

Violence has marred a number of previous Greek football matches, and last year the government increased the maximum sentence for crimes of fan violence from six months to five years after another stabbing death.

Alkis Kampanos, 19, was killed in February 2022 in the northern city of Thessaloniki during a fight between supporters of the city’s rival clubs Aris Thessaloniki and PAOK.

Last month, seven defendants were found guilty of his murder and sentenced to life imprisonment. Five others received sentences of more than 19 years for complicity.

It was the third death as a result of fan violence in a three-year period in Thessaloniki alone.

Copyright Greekcitytimes 2024