Rangers hit with partial stadium ban for sectarian chants

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Rangers have been hit with a partial stadium ban by UEFA after some fans sung sectarian chants during the Europa League qualifying match against St Joseph's in July.

The club have been told to close a section of Ibrox for their next home game in UEFA competition after breaching rules relating to racist behaviour.

Rangers must therefore ensure no fewer than 3,000 seats are empty for the play-off second leg against Legia Warsaw next Thursday.

The club have promised to try "to restrict the impact to offending supporters" and has told fans to stay away from matches if they cannot conduct themselves "in a civilised manner".

"Our supporters have been asked repeatedly by the club to refrain from indulging in this, and other forms of unacceptable behaviour," a Rangers statement said of the sectarian chants.

"Sadly, the warnings have fallen on deaf ears and the actions of this minority will cause the club and the majority of good and decent Rangers supporters to pay a heavy penalty.

"Unfortunately a significant number of supporters, innocent of any wrongdoing, will be unable to attend next week's match [against Legia]. This is deeply regrettable to all at the club and we hope that the guilty parties, who attracted the attention of UEFA might reflect on the damage their unacceptable behaviour is causing Rangers and their fellow supporters.

"If any individual supporter is unable to behave in a civilised manner then please stay away from Ibrox and our club. You are harming Rangers and that is something a genuine supporter would never wish to do."

Rangers chairman Dave King added: "Rangers is a club open to all and we will continue to convey this message at every opportunity through our Everyone Anyone initiative.

"Rangers has players and supporters from many religions, cultures and backgrounds but we are one and the same when we gather to support our club. If any supporter cannot accept that then Rangers is not the club for them."