Siarhei Hurenka: Police in Belarus regard every fan as terrorist
The coach assistant at Standard Liège compares football in Belarus and Belgium.
Siarhei Hurenka (Sergei Gurenko) answered questions of Pressball newspaper.
– What aims does Standard Liège have for this season?
– To play in European cups competitions. We will beat the target if we get through to the Champions League. Do you know how the Belgium league is organised? Each of 16 teams hosts every other team, and a playoff phase is then played. Then each of the top 6 teams plays with their opponents twice to win the Belgium championship and get through to European competitions.
– Isn't it too complicated?
– I don't think so. Football is a game for fans. It allows earning money. Belgium is the country that learnt how to do it. Liège has a population of 250,000 people, and each game attracts 15,000-20,000 fans. The stadium is filled. People drink beer three hours before the match and three hours after. But I've never seen drunken people, brawls or scandals. The championship scheme is very profitable. The more matches are played, the more you can sell and earn money. People don't go just to watch football or hockey. Are all people experts in ice hockey? People come for socialising, drinking beer, eating sausages, buying Coca-Cola and popcorn for their children. It's only in our country that the police ban something and regard every fan as a terrorist. Who will go to stadiums with such an attitude? There are police officers in Belgium, but they are not aggressive to fans. Everything is done in a civilised way. I attended football matches in Hrodna as a child. The stadium had a capacity of 14,000, and it was filled up every time. We ate and talked. The police didn't search us...