Uruguay’s Nacional fans taunt Chapecoense over air disaster

February 2 – Fans of Uruguay’s Nacional club have been condemned as “sick” for taunting Brazilian rivals Chapecoense about the plane crash which killed 71 people including 19 Chapecoense players and staff in November 2016.

During the teams’ Copa Libertadores match on Wednesday, some fans of Nacional made gestures referring to the crash.

In a statement later, Nacional apologised, adding the incident was “horrendous” and brought a “deep sense of shame”.

Nacional said it would support an investigation by Conmebol and hoped “those responsible receive the most severe penalties. Unfortunately, many sick minds channel their irrationality to sporting scenarios”, the statement read.

“National made great efforts, as in general the clubs of the continent, to avoid such episodes. On behalf of the National Football Club, we express to the president our deepest sympathy and deep sense of shame. We urge you to accept our deepest apologies.”

Chapecoense had been due to play in the final of the Copa Sudamericana against Colombian opponents Atletico Nacional when their plane crashed on its approach to Medellin. Atletico asked for Chapecoense to be handed the trophy, which was awarded to three surviving players when the team played their first game following the tragedy.

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