Football: League shows Rapid and players after scandal

“In addition to SK Rapid, all players and officials who can be seen in the videos will be reported to Senate 1,” the league announced in a broadcast. This affects managing director Steffen Hofmann, co-coach Stefan Kulovits, captain Guido Burgstaller and Marco Grüll as well as Thorsten Schick, Maximilian Hofmann and Niklas Hedl.

The comment period for Rapid is one week. According to the league, player or function bans are conceivable. “Two facts are in question: namely defamation and discrimination,” said Bundesliga board member Christian Ebenbauer in an ORF interview. The possible punishment ranges from suspensions, fines, point deductions to conditional sentences.

Ebenbauer about the Rapid case

The offensive and homophobic chants from Rapid players and officials along with fans after the derby win have repercussions. Bundesliga CEO Christian Ebenbauer comments on possible consequences in an ORF interview.

Football thrives on passion, but the most important thing is that this passion is always combined with respect. The beauty of football is that no matter what origin, race, sexual orientation or religion, everyone is welcome and should have fun with passion and emotion. But with respect,” said Ebenbauer. “These values ​​must be upheld. Especially from players, coaches and officials. The role model function must be fulfilled.”

The Austrian Football Association (ÖFB) made a similar statement. “This behavior is incompatible with the values ​​of football and fair play. Despite all the sporting rivalry and emotions, the statements are unacceptable and completely inappropriate,” said ÖFB President Klaus Mitterdorfer, who also welcomed the steps taken by the Bundesliga. The ÖFB itself reserves the right to take further steps until the matter has been fully clarified.

GEPA/Witters/ValeriaWitters ÖFB President Mitterdorfer condemned the behavior in clear words

Chants circulating on the Internet after Rapid’s 3-0 win against Austria caused great excitement. The Rapid executive board condemns the recent homophobic statements (…) in the strongest possible terms, the club said in a statement after the incidents became known.

Managing director Hofmann distributes

Before that, moving images of Hofmann had made the rounds on Monday in which he was lashing out at his city rivals (“assholes”). The club couldn’t cope any longer and went public on a broad level. Because the low-level singing of co-trainers Kulovits, Burgstaller and Grüll, among others, weighed even more heavily.

GEPA/Armin Rauthner Managing director and ex-player Hofmann is also criticized

“The fan chant we play is in absolute contradiction to our values ​​as a club and to my personal values, which I have exemplified in more than two decades in professional football and would like to continue to exemplify,” explained Kulovits in a statement from Hütteldorfer. In the emotion after the success over Wiener Austria, “a big mistake” happened. Hofmann also apologized again for the incident with an audio message to Austria and Rapid.

Role model effect not lived up to

“In this way, we would also like to clearly distance ourselves from any discrimination and homophobia and apologize to everyone who we have directly or indirectly offended through our behavior,” emphasized Burgstaller. “We are aware that we have a role model effect, and unfortunately we absolutely did not live up to this role with our actions after the game.”

Grüll, who is due to move to Werder Bremen in the German Bundesliga in the summer, said on Instagram: “As players, we have a certain role model function, and we were in no way living up to that in this situation. For this I can only sincerely apologize and assure you that we will bear the full consequences.”

The incident is likely to cause discussions at Werder. The organized fans and the club have been campaigning against discrimination and racism for years.

GEPA/Johannes Friedl Grüll didn’t do too much self-promotion before moving to Werder

Presidium announces internal review

Rapid President Alexander Wrabetz and Vice President Edeltraud Hanappi-Egger made their statements clear. “The denigration of people based on different characteristics or lifestyles should have no place at Rapid.”

As a “green-white community” we want to “make a contribution to more diversity and inclusion. Respect and appreciation for diversity are cornerstones of our club, and we expect that everyone who works at Rapid and feels connected to our club also commits to our values. As the Executive Board, we would also like to apologize for the misconduct documented on videos and will continue to work on this issue internally.”


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