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SBD Global/August 6, 2012/International Football

Blackburn Friendly With Dutch Side NEC Nijmegen Cancelled Due To Violence Threat

A pre-season friendly between Championship Blackburn FC and Dutch club NEC Nijmegen scheduled for Sunday was cancelled "due to the threat of fan violence," according to the PA. The decision "was taken by the police and the local authorities in Nijmegen after it was claimed that Rovers supporters had been involved in disturbances in Deventer" on Friday and Saturday. In addition to the friendly, Nijmegen had been set to host a fans' open day, "with the local authorities expecting around 8,000 visitors including families with young children." A statement on the Gelderland-Zuid section of the http://www.politie.nl website read: "Supporters of the English club Blackburn Rovers were involved in rioting in Deventer on Friday and on Saturday there was a confrontation with supporters of NEC Nijmegen in the city. On the basis of serious signals to the police that a confrontation would take place again today, deputy mayor Henk Beerten in consultation with police, judiciary and mayor Hubert Bruls decided to cancel the match this afternoon." The news "follows allegations of racist abuse" against Newcastle's players during Saturday night's 0-0 draw with Eredivisie side ADO Den Haag (PA, 8/5).
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