Disgrace or common sense? A thousand Willem II fans gather and break coronavirus measures

Yesterday evening, hundreds of Willem II supporters gathered in a square in Tilburg to watch the match against Rangers FC. Theo Wetering, the mayor of Tilburg, allowed this gathering which videos show did not adhere to coronavirus measures at all.

In the video below, you’ll see the fans huddled up close, singing and yelling with no masks on at all. Some were even throwing fireworks, reports NU.nl.

Fans were banned from watching the game live at the Koning Willem II Stadium on the Goirleseweg in Tilburg, for the purpose of keeping coronavirus measures. But the municipality gave permission for a large screen to be set up in the square, so that up to 1000 fans could watch the game together. They were given instructions to keep a safe distance, but of course it did not take long for the rowdy bunch to group together.

Despite the fans’ behaviour — which presented an obvious coronavirus risk — Wetering defended his decision, saying, “If you don’t allow it, you run the risk that supporters will manifest themselves in different places in the city. By having them watch the game together in a square, it is all easier to control and enforce it. It was a conscious choice.”

Losses and lessons

In the end though, the mayor admits that the gathering was for nothing as the Tilburg team lost 0-4 to the Scottish club Rangers FC and are now out of the tournament.

“With the knowledge of now and the information we still get from the police, we will certainly look back next week, evaluate and draw our lessons,” Wetering told Omroep Brabant.

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Feature Image: Daniel Kern/Pixabay

Emily Burger
Emily Burger
Emily grew up in South Africa but has also lived in Egypt, the UK, Canada and now the Netherlands. She first came here for her Bachelors in Arts and Culture at Maastricht University and soon fell in love with the land of canals, clogs and cheese. When she's not daydreaming about sci-fi movies or countries yet to explore, you can find her writing for DutchReview.


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