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Esperance celebrate centenary despite ban for supporters

BBC Africa Sport/Maximilian Kasseh, Jr.
There was a noisy and hostile environment at the African Champions League semi-final second leg in Tunisia as Esperance took on Primeiro de Agosto
There was a noisy and hostile environment at the African Champions League semi-final second leg in Tunisia as Esperance took on Primeiro de Agosto

Tunisia's Esperance are continuing the club's centenary celebrations despite being punished by the Confederation of African Football (Caf).

The title-holders will have to play their next two African Champions League matches behind closed doors.

News of the ban came on the eve of the day the club marks its centenary.

Esperance have been sanctioned for the behaviour of their fans ahead of the second leg of last year's Champions League final against Egypt's Al Ahly.

The Tunisian side had been put on probation by Caf after problems during the second leg of their semi-final against Primeiro de Agosto of Angola.

There has been no official response from the club to the ban as they celebrate 100 years since the club was founded.
The ban will only have a minimal affect on the club as they are not able to play at home at the moment as the Rades Stadium near Tunis is being redeveloped.

With the 14,000 season-ticket holders adopting the club president Hamdi Meddeb's suggestion of an "everyone-or-no-one policy" many fans have not been attending recent matches at neutral venues.

Indeed they played the recent derby match against fierce rivals Club Africain in Monastir in a practically empty stadium.

They will be playing their upcoming games at the El Menzah stadium in Tunis, with the hardcore fans having already said they would not be attending even before the Caf sanction.

El Menzah's usual capacity is more than 45,000 however the stadium authorities say due to the poor condition of large parts of the ground it can currently only welcome 5,000 fans
 

 


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