Official: No away fans allowed in Naples – written decree now in force

The head of the prefecture of the City of Naples has enacted a decree which prevents SSC Napoli from selling tickets for the Champions League Round of 16 match against Eintracht to away fans.

The decree from the prefecture Naples, which had already been announced on Tuesday, forbids SSC Napoli from selling tickets to residents of Germany and was formally executed in the early afternoon, with Eintracht Frankfurt being informed at the same time. It thus confirms that Eintracht Frankfurt will have to travel to Naples for the UEFA Champions League round of 16 second leg without any of their own fans.

“This is a unique procedure in terms of European club football and one that goes against the spirit of competition,” said Eintracht board member Philipp Reschke. “That ties against Napoli are what are termed high-risk matches, due to the rivalry and the overall set of circumstances which obviously pose challenges for the local security staff on-site, is not something that suddenly came to light overnight – this was clear on the day of the draw. The first leg went as we expected it to and certainly with way fewer concerns than might have been feared.

This is a unique procedure in terms of European club football and one that goes against the spirit of competition.

Board member Philipp Reschke

“The situation regarding the return leg was therefore not altered in any way by how the first leg played out. The Naples security authorities have now had four months and are either not prepared or not in a position to provide security in the city and the stadium as far as this match is concerned. Whichever it is, it is equally unacceptable and simply not credible.”

Eintracht Frankfurt are currently working on an appeal against this decree. “We know from our consultations with experienced Italian lawyers that there is realistically little hope of overturning the decree via expedited proceedings – comparable cases in Serie A tell us that,” said Reschke. “We are gearing up for a long and delicate administrative process – but this is something that has already worked out once before.”