Valencia fined, Barcelona censured for bottle incident

Madrid (AFP) – Valencia were fined and warned on Wednesday after a section of fans pelted celebrating Barcelona players with a bottle, but the Spanish champions were also criticised for their conduct.

Luis Suarez and Neymar were hit by a plastic bottle thrown by the Valencia fans as Barca celebrated a last-gasp 3-2 win at Mestalla on Saturday in what had been a bad-tempered La Liga encounter.

A disciplinary committee of the Spanish Football Federation fined the home side 1,500 euros ($1,600) and said a repeat could result in a stadium closure.

But it also had harsh words for Barcelona, accusing some of their players — without giving names — of “reproachable behaviour” as they celebrated close to the touchline.

However, the Federation stressed that “nothing, absolutely nothing justifies a violent public reaction”.

In response, Barcelona issued a statement calling the criticism of their players “totally reproachable”.

“The committee should have confined itself to analysing the facts and apply the existing rules,” the Catalan club said.

Barcelona coach Luis Enrique had said in the immediate aftermath of the incident: “We celebrated as it is normal to celebrate a last-minute winner.”

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