West Ham reluctantly accepts UEFA ban on supporters for Vienna clash

West Ham was issued with the ban for the match in Austria on November 25 after crowd trouble at its Group H clash against Belgian team Genk earlier this month.

File image of West Ham United in Premier League action.   -  Action Images via Reuters

West Ham United has reluctantly accepted a ban on its supporters for next week's Europa League match at Rapid Vienna after receiving written reasons for the sanction from UEFA's Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body, the club said on Wednesday.

The Premier League side was issued with the ban for the match in Austria on November 25 after crowd trouble at its Group H clash against Belgian team Genk earlier this month.

West Ham initially said it was "surprised" by the sanction but accepted the decision on Wednesday after receiving evidence from European football's governing body.

"Despite the club's robust processes around our own security and operations in support of our ticketed fans who travelled to Genk, evidence has been presented to confirm that a small number of ticketless individuals caused disturbances and illegally gained entrance to Genk's stadium," the club said in a statement.

"West Ham condemn the behaviour of this group of individuals and we are working to identify them following their actions, which have now ultimately led to our supporters being punished and resulting in David Moyes' team being forced to play in Austria without the backing of the club's fans."

West Ham said that supporters who had purchased tickets to the game would be refunded. However, many may not be able to get back the money they had spent on travel plans to Vienna.

Moyes' team is top of Group H with 10 points from four matches, having not lost a game so far in its first European campaign in five years.

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