Celtics green brigade protesting
about remembrance day.
Celtic have closed a section of their stadium for safety reasons after repeated warnings to fans to remain seated during matches were ignored.
Fans in section 111, home to the ‘Green Brigade’, will now be offered a refund or given the chance to relocate.
Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell has warned fans about “lateral movement” but has now decided to act.
The Green Brigade are a self-styled ‘ultras’ group of fans known for banner displays, demonstrations and chanting.
Manager Neil Lennon has previously praised the Green Brigade for the atmosphere they create inside Celtic Park but has also urged a minority to stop the singing that resulted in a 2011 Uefa charge of “illicit chanting”.
In 2010, the group displayed a multi-part anti-poppy banner during the club’s 9-0 home win against Aberdeen, which resulted in a club apology and prompted Northern Ireland DUP MP Gregory Campbell to speak out against the club.
The Green Brigade are also known for a display during matches where most of the section of fans turns its back on the pitch and celebrates by jumping up and down in a huddled gesture, which has risked falling foul of the requirements for the club’s stadium safety certificate.
At a recent Champions League qualifier against Cliftonville, pyrotechnics were set off during the match requiring a stadium announcement instructing fans to desist from such behaviour. The club is now subject to disciplinary action for a contravention of Uefa’s safety and security regulations.
Following that match Celtic raised concerns of overcrowding in section 111 and the refusal of spectators to comply with the direction of safety stewards.
Unsafe “lateral movement of spectators” and “body surfing” was also highlighted, along with damage to 131 seats.
Thirteen people were arrested in March after police moved in to break up what they said was an unauthorised march by the Green Brigade outside the Chrystal Bell pub in Glasgow’s Gallowgate, prompting criticism of Strathclyde Police by Labour councillor George Ryan.
A further statement from the club is expected on the closure of section 111.
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