December 30 – A Spanish second division match abandoned at half-time after Rayo Vallecano fans chanted that Albacete’s Ukrainian forward Roman Zozulya (pictured) was a ‘Nazi’ is to resume behind closed doors.
The Spanish Football Federation handed Rayo an €18,000 fine and a two-match partial stadium closure after the referee called off the game on December 15 at the request of both teams due to “grave insults and threats” made towards Zozulya.
It was the first time in the history of Spanish football that a match had been abandoned because of offensive chanting. A date for the second half of the game has not yet been set.
Zozulya joined Rayo on loan in 2017 but the deal was quickly pulled. At his first and only training session with the club, he was given an angry reception by Rayo fans who said the town was “not a place for Nazis”. Zozulya immediately returned to parent club Real Betis before signing for Albacete as a free agent.
The Ukraine international has always firmly denied links with far-right groups and in an open letter to Rayo fans at the time he joined them claimed there had been “a misunderstanding by a journalist who knows very little about the reality of my country and my own career.”
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