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Last Updated: Thursday, 9 December, 2004, 11:39 GMT
FA charges Liverpool and Millwall
Police try to quell the trouble during Millwall's match against Liverpool
God knows what the FA is up to - the charges are ridiculous
Millwall chairman Theo Paphitis
Liverpool and Millwall have been charged by the Football Association over crowd trouble during their Carling Cup match on 26 October.

Millwall, who lost the match 3-0, are the first club to be charged by the FA over racist behaviour by their fans.

The disciplinary action relates to alleged abuse aimed at Liverpool's French defender Djimi Traore.

In addition, four people were ejected from Millwall's stadium, seats were thrown and a disabled fan was injured.

As a result, Millwall have been charged with failing to ensure that fans refrained from racist and/or abusive behaviour and for failing to prevent spectators throwing missiles onto the pitch.

The news has staggered Lions chairman Theo Paphitis, who said: "God knows what the FA are up to.

"There was never any indication of racist abuse being brought into the discussions.

"The charges are completely ridiculous and we'll see what evidence the FA has got to back them up.

"It just seems like the FA is a rudderless-ship at the moment and is seeking publicity for its own aim. Racism is too important a subject to use to point score."

Liverpool have been charged with one breach for failing to prevent their fans conducting themselves in threatening and/or violent and/or provocative behaviour.

The Anfield side's fans claimed the trouble was sparked by Millwall supporters' chants about the Hillsborough disaster, where 96 people were crushed to death in April 1989.

But Lions chairman Theo Paphitis has denied this and said CCTV footage showed the catalyst for the trouble was a Liverpool fan attacking a Millwall fan in the west stand.

Both clubs have until 23 December to respond to the charges.





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