With the Champions League final tonight between Chelsea and Manchester United, the LONDON SUN reports on the police tactics to be used by Moscow police if *gasp* one of the 50,000 Brits on the trip steps out of line.
(Nude ice showers? bed chains? A soccer match or bootleg fetish porn video?)
DRUNKEN football yobs who cause trouble at the Champions League Final will be stripped naked and given ice-cold showers. Russian authorities said boozy fans will be herded into special mobile cages and ferried to Moscow’s feared “Sobering Houses”. Anyone resisting police will be chained to beds for the night.
Over 7,000 police will be on hand for the game and postgame activities, reinforced by troops shuttled in from the Chechnyan front. No word if Max Mosely will also be brought in to consult on additional, sadistic police techniques.
Don’t know about you, but I have much more interest in the postgame outcome on the streets of Moscow than inside the stadium earlier that night (that said, the game should be lotsa fun).
I really can’t think of a more foreboding place in *Europe* to control fans, and also limit media coverage if things get really out of hand. Then again, the British press will be there, so we’re perhaps more likely to hear an accurate accounting if things go crazy.
It is also amusing to us that Moscow is hosting the Champions League final, since the host country of such a game is typically a continental European nation (or England). Of course, Moscow desperately wants to be thought of as European, but in all reality, it isn’t. And I seriously doubt that folks in England, France and Italy consider Russia to be Europe.
Wikipedia notes Russia’s UEFA membership thusly: “Several national football associations which are geographically in Asia or mostly in Asia belong to UEFA rather than the Asian Football Confederation (AFC). These nations are Armenia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Turkey, Israel, Cyprus, Russia and Azerbaijan (Israel and Kazakhstan are former AFC members).”
If you’ve ever been to continental Europe, you know the disdain most folks have for Russia. If you ask them what continent the country is located, they are much more likely to classify Russia as an Asian country, as a slap at Moscow - which makes the hosting of tonight’s match all the more nonsensical.
And as long as tyrants like Putin and his minions continue to milk Russia for their own personal gain, don’t count on things getting any better there.