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Title chasing Bayern fined over gay banner

ROBBEN-CELEBMUNICH, Germany, March 25- Bayern Munich travel to Germany’s capital on Tuesday determined to finally secure the Bundesliga title in record time by taking three points from Hertha Berlin.

Meanwhile, UEFA have fined them 10,000 euros (US$13,774) for an offensive banner and ordered to close part of the Allianz Arena for their Champions League home quarter-final against Manchester United.

European football’s governing body punished holders Bayern after their fans displayed a banner carrying the text “Gay Gunners”, aimed at opponents Arsenal during the Champions League last 16 second leg 1-1 draw in Munich on March 11.

Bayern progressed to the quarter-finals 3-1 on aggregate having won the first leg 2-0 in London and have drawn David Moyes’ United with the first leg at Old Trafford on April 1 and the return in Munich on April 9.

UEFA’s Control and Disciplinary body have also ordered the closing of a section of the Allianz Arena for the Munich leg and warned that a repeat offence will carry a 50,000 euros fine and a future match to be played behind closed doors.

“We regret the incident from the game against Arsenal and distance ourselves from the discriminatory banner. FC Bayern will never accept something like that,” said Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.

“Unfortunately, we have to accept UEFA’s punishment.

Away from that, a 19th consecutive league victory at Berlin’s Olympic Stadium will give Bayern their 24th German title with seven matches left, beating their own record they set last season.

Bayern’s 2-0 win at Mainz 05 on Saturday kept them a massive 23 points clear in the league and they will finally be uncatchable if they win at Hertha having dominated all season.

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“There’s obviously a great sense of anticipation,” said Bayern’s Austria left-back David Alaba.

“We know that we haven’t achieved anything yet, so we’ll be going there in a serious mood.

“We want to win the Bundesliga trophy as quickly as possible.”

Bayern face an away leg at Manchester United on April 1 in the Champions League’s quarter-finals and are eager to get the Bundesliga title wrapped up as quickly as possible to focus on Europe.

Bayern are not expected to have too many problems at Berlin’s Olympic Stadium with Hertha having lost their last two games and went down 3-0 at Borussia Moechengldabach on Saturday.

There are considerable security concerns for Tuesday’s Ruhr derby as second-placed Borussia Dortmund host Schalke 04, who are just a point behind in third.

Dortmund are on a final warning from the German Football Association (DFB) and tensions are high with third-placed Schalke a point behind their rivals and violence has marred their recent meetings.

Around 3,000 police officers are expected to be on duty on Tuesday in one of the biggest police operations for a German football match.

Police say they expect around 500 violent fans from both teams while 90 individuals have already been banned.

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The DFB will be paying close attention having fined Borussia 60,000 euros (US$82,764) and threatened sanctions on Friday after Dortmund fans were involved in incidents at three separate league matches.

Rioting broke out at last October’s Ruhr derby in Gelsenkirchen at Schalke’s Veltins Arena when a group of Dortmund fans stormed into an area of the ground for home fans.

The DFB have told Dortmund they will have to play one league game with their famous South Stand empty if there is any more trouble from their fans in the next seven months.

Sami Hyypia’s fourth-placed Bayer Leverkusen are at Augsburg on Wednesday looking for their first win since the start of February having lost eight of their last nine games.

The Werkself crashed to a last-minute 3-2 defeat at home to Hoffenheim on Sunday and are in danger of dropping out of the Champions League places if their slump continues.

There are some key relegation battles on Wednesday with second-from bottom Nuremberg hosting fellow relegation-candidates VfB Stuttgart, who are just a point above them.

Nuremberg have lost their last four games while VfB Stuttgart beat Hamburg 1-0 on Saturday to register their first win in 11 games and climb out of the bottom three.

Likewise Hamburg, who are facing a historic first relegation from the Bundesliga, are 16th as they host Freiburg who moved up to 14th after Friday’s 3-1 win at home to Werder Bremen.

Playing Tuesday (all fixtures 1900 GMT)

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Borussia Dortmund v Schalke, Werder Bremen v VfL Wolfsburg, Eintracht Braunschweig v Mainz 05, Hertha Berlin v Bayern Munich

Playing Wednesday

Nuremberg v VfB Stuttgart, Hoffenheim v Hanover, Augsburg v Bayer Leverkusen, Hamburg v Freiburg, Eintracht Frankfurt v Borussia Moenchengladbach



  1. Jere

    March 25, 2014 at 6:54 am

    this is what they need to do with local clubs. Punish the club severely for the sins of its fans. And hooliganism in Kenyan soccer will come to and end.

  2. Njonjo Ndehi

    March 25, 2014 at 4:00 pm

    Search for “Very high HIV incidence among men who have sex with men in Kenya”. Then search for “Hepatitis C epidemic mostly confined to HIV positive gay men”. Finally search for “Lawmakers ask Gilead CEO John C. Martin to explain the rationale for selling Sovaldi for $1,000 per pill, or $84,000 for a 12-week course to treat hepatitis C”. It’s obvious that homosexuality is a fatal and expensive lifestyle.

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