Dresden facing ban after more German Cup violence

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DRESDEN, Germany (AP) -Dynamo Dresden faces being banned from the German Cup next season following a second case of fan violence in two years.

Rioting broke out during Dresden's second-round loss at Hannover on Wednesday, when 21 fans were arrested and several people were injured, including three police officers.

Dresden said Thursday on the club website it was "ashamed and disgusted" by the fans who "discredited nationwide thousands of peaceful supporters and even caused them quite serious difficulties at the entrance yesterday evening."

About 400 Dresden fans overran security to storm into the stadium before kickoff, while about 200 invaded the pitch after the match, setting off banned firecrackers, the dapd news agency reported.

"The stewards were really fearful at times," Hannover police spokesman Dirk Hallmann said.

Dresden said it would "meet our responsibilities" but criticized sections of the media as having "lost touch with care, balance and accountability in dealing with this complex issue."

The club was originally excluded from this year's competition after supporters clashed with police and rival fans in the second-round match at Borussia Dortmund last season, but the ban was overturned on appeal.

"We've understood the ruling to be a final warning shot," club president Andreas Ritter said at the time, when Dresden was fined ?100,000 ($129,900), ordered to play a home game in an empty stadium and fans were banned from an away match.

Representatives of the German Football Federation (DFB), league associations and police unions met in Frankfurt on Thursday to discuss the problems of fan violence.

"It's very important to us to improve security at football games in Germany," DFB President Wolfgang Niersbach said.

Last month's Ruhr derby between Borussia Dortmund and Schalke was also marred by violence, leaving 11 people injured, including eight officers, and leading to 180 arrests.

"There is an urgent need to make the discussion more objective," German Football League president Reinhard Rauball said. "Therefore more intensive talks are needed with all those involved, including the fans and police of course."

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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