July 22nd, 2024

UEFA suspends Turkey player Merih Demiral for 2 games for making nationalistic gesture at Euro 2024

By The Associated Press on July 5, 2024.

Turkey's Merih Demiral celebrates after scoring his side second goal during a round of sixteen match between Austria and Turkey at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Leipzig, Germany, Tuesday, July 2, 2024. UEFA has launched an investigation into Turkey soccer player Merih Demiral's “alleged inappropriate behavior” after he celebrated a goal at Euro 2024 by displaying a hand sign associated with an ultra-nationalist group. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)

BERLIN (AP) – UEFA has suspended Turkey player Merih Demiral for two matches for making a controversial gesture at the European Championship.

The governing body said Friday that it had banned the defender “for failing to comply with the general principles of conduct, for violating the basic rules of decent conduct, for using sports events for manifestations of a non-sporting nature and for bringing the sport of football into disrepute.”

Demiral scored both goals Tuesday in a 2-1 win over Austria to earn Turkey’s place in the quarterfinals and celebrated with a hand sign associated with an ultra-nationalist group.

After scoring the second goal he made a sign with each hand that is used by Turkish nationalists and associated with the Turkish ultra-nationalist organization Ulku Ocaklari, which is more widely known as the Gray Wolves.

Demiral will miss Turkey’s match with the Netherlands in Berlin on Saturday.

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AP Euro 2024: https://apnews.com/hub/euro-2024

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