The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) criticized Maccabi Haifa after the soccer club held a moment of silence in memory of the victims of the October 7th massacre in southern Israel.
In addition to the moment of silence, the club erected a display with 1,400 balloons and an Israeli flag in the stands. The players and staff also held a tribute to the hostages and victims during a game against the Spanish Villarreal CF.
UEFA was angered that the tribute was to the Israeli victims and the "Gazan victims of the war" were not mentioned.
The union also claimed that the team would be heavily fined for the tribute.
Maccabi Haifa responded to UEFA's claims: "This is our story. 1,400 were murdered, among them babies, children, and women, who were even raped. A horrifying massacre. There is no symmetry here. Our soldiers are fighting a just war, a war of no choice to bring back 240 hostages and to restore the security of the citizens of Israel against a blood-thirsty, murderous, and Nazi terror organization. This our story, and this our statement."