Insulting chants by children who were invited by Juventus to watch a weekend match have earned the club a €5,000 ($7,000) fine.
The Italian league announced the penalty Tuesday after the young fans targeted Udinese goalkeeper Zeljko Brkic during Sunday’s match, which Juventus won 1-0. The win lifted Juve three points clear at the top of Serie A.
A total of 12,000 children under 13 filled the Juventus stadium at the weekend to watch the Serie A game against Udinese. The club’s initiative, which was applauded by many, prevented Sunday’s game from being played behind closed doors. Juve had been handed a stadium closure for that match as punishment for their fans’ geographically discriminatory chants towards Napoli supporters in last month’s game.
A statement from the Lega Serie A read: "Juventus have been fined 5000 euros for their very young supporters having repeatedly insulted a player of a rival team."Brkic made a number of fine saves throughout the game before Fernando Llorente scored the winner in stoppage time to hand Juve a 1-0 triumph.
Other than the sporadic chants, however, the children were on good behavior and the move was considered a success, meaning they could be brought back for future matches around the league when ultras are banned.