Liverpool & Juventus Mark Heysel Tragedy
Fri 29th May 2015 | Safety & Security
Today marks the 30th anniversary of the Heysel stadium disaster which saw 39 people lose their lives.
The tragedy at Heysel Stadium in 1985 which occurred ahead of the European Cup final between Liverpool and Juventus marked a low point for English football and saw clubs from England banned from competing in all European competitions indefinitely.
UEFA President Michel Platini, who scored the winning goal for Juventus against Liverpool FC that night, paid tribute to the 39 who died and to all those affected.
“Thirty years ago, I played in a European Champion Clubs' Cup final at the Heysel Stadium in Brussels,” he said in a statement on UEFA.com.
“And I continue to play in that final. It hasn't left me, just like it hasn't left anyone else who was there that night, and remains with all those who lost a loved one, for whom everything changed in a few terrible minutes.
“Thirty years later, I am the president of UEFA, the organisation that organised this match, and I am working every day with all my colleagues and friends at the national associations, leagues and clubs to ensure that we will never again experience the horror of such a night.
“We have been working unceasingly for the last 30 years to guarantee safety and security at sporting venues across Europe.”
Paying their respects today, Liverpool FC’s club chaplain, Bill Bygroves, will hold a private memorial service this morning at Anfield.
A floral tribute will also be placed by Phil Neal, Liverpool captain at the time of the disaster, at the foot of the Heysel memorial plaque in the club’s Centenary Stand.
Juventus sporting director Gianluca Pessotto and former player Massimo Bonini will also lay 39 white lilies at the memorial, one for each life lost.
Also in attendance to pay their respects will be other former players who were at Heysel, club officials, representatives from UEFA and The FA, Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson, and Lord Mayor of Liverpool Tony Concepcion.
Flags across all club sites are being flown at half-mast throughout the day and access to the Heysel memorial plaque will be open to the public after the private memorial service.
Juventus, who face Barcelona in the Champions League final in Berlin next week, will also hold a ceremony which will see representatives from Liverpool, including club ambassador Ian Rush attend a mass at Chiesa della Gran Madre di Dio Church in Turin, having been invited by Juventus to pay their respects.
Phil Neal said: "It is an honour for me to lay a wreath at the Heysel memorial today in remembrance of those who lost their lives.
"What happened at Heysel will always be with me and everybody else who was there on that terrible day - we will never forget."
Ian Ayre, Liverpool's chief executive officer, added: "Today marks 30 years since the tragedy at the Heysel Stadium.
"This is - and always will be - a hugely important day in the history of Liverpool Football Club. We continue to remember those who lost their lives and everyone who has been impacted by the disaster.
"I thank Juventus Football Club for inviting us to attend their mass in Turin and for their ongoing friendship."
Image: Action Images / Craig Brough
Posted by: Aaron Gourley
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