CSKA on ‘premature’ escalator blame

CSKA Moscow insist claims their supporters jumping caused the collapse of the escalator in Rome are just “premature conclusions.”

The incident occurred in the Repubblica Metro station just before the Champions League match at the Stadio Olimpico.

Over 20 were hurt in the crush when the bottom steps of the escalator crumpled, speeding it up and causing several injuries, including the partial amputation of a foot.

Italian media immediately quoted eye-witness reports of the CSKA fans jumping and dancing on the escalator until it broke – a version of events that was also confirmed by Mayor of Rome Virginia Raggi last night.

Today, CSKA Moscow released an official statement.

“Yesterday before the game against AS Roma an accident happened at one of the underground stations as an escalator collapsed.

“Dozens of PFC CSKA fans were injured, with some of them were taken to hospital in serious condition. Our aim now is to help everyone who was involved in the accident. We provide visa and financial support, replace unused airline tickets, etc. Our staff has been in continuous contact with the ones who suffered in the accident.

“We’d like to mention that the representatives of Russian Embassy in Rome and Russian Football Union immediately reacted and are also doing everything possible to help injured people. Medical and police services of Rome, despite the controversial rumors, didn’t leave our citizens without support and tried their best to help them.

“Regarding the various official comments about the reasons of the accident (including the statement about pseudofans jumping on the escalator) we think that it’s not the right moment for the premature conclusions.

“Our faithful fans and citizens were hurt, and now the top priority are their health and homecoming. It’s up to Rome police authorities to investigate the reasons why escalator in the underground of one of the global capitals where hundred thousand people travel every day collapsed and thus threatened the people’s lives.”

It’s hardly the first time that the transport infrastructure in Rome has been under attack, as over the last few months several buses have spontaneously caught fire.

In August, the Ponte Morandi bridge in Genoa collapsed, killing 43 people, and an investigation is on-going into how this was possible.

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