UEFA said Monday that it was opening a formal investigation into the events that surrounded fans trying to enter the Stade de France on Saturday to watch the Champions League soccer final between Real Madrid and Liverpool.
The kickoff of one of soccer’s most high-profile games as well as a pregame performance by the Grammy-nominated Camila Cabello were delayed by more than a half-hour as fans, mostly from the English club, had trouble getting into the venue in the heart of Paris. Shuttered entry gates forced many ticketed fans to wait as many as three hours to gain entrance.
In the U.S., the CBS Sports/Paramount+ studio team of Kate Abdo, Thierry Henry, Jamie Carragher and Micah Richards were forced to stretch out their pregame show as word of the delay came down. There were reports of tear gas used at some point on the crowd outside, which were predominantly wearing Liverpool red.
By the time of Cabello’s pregame show, Liverpool fans finally were getting to their seats and tried to make up for lost time, using the singer’s six-minute performance of a medley of her hits including “Havana” and “Señorita” to chant team songs while Real Madrid fans responded in kind.
It prompted Cabello, in now-deleted tweets, to let people know she heard it. “Playing back our performance and I can’t believe people were singing their teams anthem so loud during our performance. Like my team and i worked tirelessly for so long to bring right vibes and give a good show.”
Responded one attendee on Twitter: Sorry @Camila_Cabello for ruining your vibe but 2hrs 10 of being in a this horrendous situation hoping my family wouldn’t get robbed / tear gassed / crushed kind of killed mine @ChampionsLeague @UEFAcom.
Cabella later tweeted out thanks to all for the opportunity:
This was something I will never forget !!!!!!! Dream moment for all of us! Thank you UEFA @ChampionsLeague and @PepsiGlobal, we’re so honored to be part of such a huge game #PepsiShowhttps://t.co/XeDYMiydux pic.twitter.com/DMx6ec9uAj
— camila (@Camila_Cabello) May 29, 2022
UEFA said in a statement today that it has commissioned an independent report that “will examine decision making, responsibility and behaviours of all entities involved in the final.” The findings will be made public once completed, after which UEFA will evaluate next steps.
During the delay, which lasted about 35 minutes in all, UEFA said a delay of the arrival of fans was among the reasons for the problems outside. Other reports said fake tickets prompted a shutdown of certain entranceways.
In the game, Real Madrid’s Vinicius Junior scored midway through the second half to secure a 1-0 victory over favored Liverpool, which was going for its third major trophy of the year.
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