Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Celtic fans taunt U.S. captain with airplane gesture (Osama Bin Laden)

GLASGOW, Scotland (AP) -- American midfielder Claudio Reyna of Glasgow Rangers was taunted by a fan imitating an airplane in a "disgusting" gesture recalling the Sept. 11 terror attacks in the United States.

Reyna, captain of the U.S. national team, was named to a 23-man roster on Sunday ahead of Sunday's World Cup qualifier against Jamaica in Foxboro, Mass. (2 p.m.; ABC). A loss would virtually eliminate the U.S. from the 2002 World Cup finals.

However, he limped off the field in the second half Sunday in his first game back after a groin injury. According to the Rangers official Web site, the club has no major injury worries over Reyna, but his status for Sunday is not known.

Said Rangers team doctor Gert Goudswaard: "Claudio hurt his knee when he collided with the post and, although it is causing him some pain, we managed to get ice on it quickly and it's not too badly swollen."

But is wasn't his injury that drew headlines on Monday.

"It's disgusting to think about it because of how horrible the tragedy was and how someone could stoop that low," Reyna said Monday after Rangers was beaten 2-0 by Celtic at Rangers' Ibrox stadium.

The "Old Firm" match is one of the most bitterly contested in world soccer, with the clubs divided along mostly sectarian lines -- Roman Catholics supporting Celtic and Protestants behind Rangers.

A Celtic fan made the plane gesture toward Reyna as he was taking a corner kick.

"I did honestly think about it afterward and I was surprised," Reyna told STV Scotland Today. "I thought that if anything it [the tragedy] would teach people to unite and not to act like that.

"I wouldn't care even if he had had a lot to drink, you wouldn't think that something as sick as that would come into someone's mind. If they can punish the person they should because that's pretty awful. Or they should at least point it out to the fans because it's just uncalled for."

A Celtic spokeswoman, who asked not to be named in keeping with club policy, said the guilty fan would be "banned for life." She said his "blurry" image was caught by at least one newspaper. She said video footage of the incident had not been located.

"This one person has managed to drag the supporters into the mud with the lowest and most despicable behavior imaginable," she said.

Meanwhile, two planeloads of Northern Ireland residents who attended Sunday's game arrived home a day late Monday in Belfast after airline pilots decided they were too drunk to fly following the match.

The passengers included supporters of Celtic and Rangers. Ferries that serve the Belfast-Scotland routes before for Celtic-Rangers games often segregate the two sets of fans on alternate decks.


Celtic fans mocks 9/11

Celtic fans can clearly be seen mocking American Claudia Reyna by making aeroplane gestures as he takes a corner kick just weeks after the 9/11 atrocities.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...