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Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Germany fan searches row continues

Stephan Uersfeld, Germany Correspondent

The controversy caused by the installation of tents in which away fans were searched for flares before Eintracht Frankfurt's game at Bayern Munich continues after contradictory reports about their effectiveness.

Two tents were installed under a measure recommended in a joint German league and FA report called The Safe Stadium Experience, but the measure was described by fan lawyers as an "intensive intrusion into civil rights".

Frankurt supporters were asked to take off their jackets so they could be searched for flares, but none were found.

But both Bayern Munich and Munich police vice-president Robert Kopp claimed the measures had nevertheless been successful and would be repeated when the Bundesliga leaders played clubs whose fans could attempt to bring flares into the stadium.

On Monday, media reports said items including around 20 knives, pepper spray and cocaine had been found on the 30 to 40 people who were searched in the tents.

But a report released by Munich police contradicted that, saying many of the items had been discovered outside the stadium.

On Wednesday Frankfurt fan magazine BLOG G spoke to Bayern Munich press officer Markus Horwick, who confirmed that the items were found both inside and outside the stadium and said he was not able to give specific information on what had been found inside the tents.

The Safe Stadium Experience paper has split clubs in Germany. Bayern and Borussia Dortmund are among those in favour of measures that would mean stricter controls over supporters, but other clubs are not willing to sign up to the paper.

"When it gets to the stage that we have to use metal detectors, like at the airport, football will have lost," Stuttgart general manager Fredi Bobic said.

In a statement before the game at Bayern, a Frankfurt fans' statement said: "We have clearly pointed out [to the Bavarian police] that we are, to the fullest extent, against those measures," the Frankfurt fans' statement said. "We consider them inappropriate and unreasonable."

Other clubs, including Schalke and Borussia Moenchengladbach, have already opted against the use of tents.

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