UEFA announced the decision following a meeting of its Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body, saying Barça had breached article 16 (2) (e) of the regulations. The article prohibits “the use of gestures, words, objects or any other means to transmit any message that is not fit for a sports event, particularly messages that are of a political, ideological, religious, offensive or provocative nature”. Is a pro-independence flag, fully supported by most of the population, provocative? For whom?
Last July UEFA already fined the club €30,000 for pro-independence flags at Champions League final. Barcelona have vowed to use all legal means to fight a second fine imposed by UEFA after fans displayed pro-Catalan independence flags during September's Champions League Group E match at home to Bayer Leverkusen. This second time the sanction is even higher € 40,000.