• UEFA have confirmed they are investigating Polish referee Szymon Marciniak
  • Marciniak has been accused of speaking at a conference with a far right leader
  • The referee is currently due to officiate the Champions League final in Istanbul 

UEFA are reviewing the appointment of referee Szymon Marciniak for the Champions League final after the official was accused of speaking at an event organised by a far-right leader in Poland.

Marciniak was appointed to officiate the Champions League final between Manchester City and Inter Milan last month.

The referee may now be replaced for the showpiece in Istanbul on 10 June, with UEFA set to confirm a decision on Friday. 

It follows the Warsaw based anti-racism group Never Again claiming that Marciniak had promoted and participated in a recent event organised by a Polish far-right leader Slawomir Mentzen.

'Uefa is aware of the allegations surrounding Szymon Marciniak and is seeking urgent clarification,' a statement read.

'Uefa and the whole football community abhor the "values" that are promoted by the group in question and takes these allegations very seriously.

'A further announcement will be made [Friday], after reviewing all the evidence.'  

Mentzen, the leader of the Confederation party, has launched the political slogan 'We stand against Jews, gays, abortion, taxation and the European Union'.

The event was held on May 29 under the title 'Everest' with the Polish referee listed as one of the keynote speakers at the International Congress Centre in Katowice.

Marciniak's appearance had been used on promotional material for the event, while Mentzen was shown drinking beer on a poster.  

Mentzen, who owns a brewery, previously sparked outrage in 2021 by releasing a beer called White IPA Matters.

An advert for the beer featured a black barman cleaning glasses with the camera cutting to symbols of America's Deep South, including a Confederate flag.

While publicised as a business conference for entrepreneurs, it has been claimed Monday's event was being used to promote Mentzen’s political agenda.

Marciniak was pictured at the event, prompting calls for the referee to distance himself from Mentzen.

'We are shocked and appalled by Marciniak's public association with Mentzen and his brand of toxic far-right politics,' said Rafal Pankowski, a co-founder of Never Again.

'It is incompatible with the basic values of fair play such as equality and respect.

'We call upon the referee to acknowledge his mistake.

'If he does not do it, we believe UEFA and FIFA should draw consequences.'

Marciniak had officiated the World Cup final between France and Argentina last December, was appointed to take charge of a first Champions League's final.

The 42-year-old has taken charge of eight Champions League matches this season, including the second leg of Man City's semi-final win over Real Madrid. 

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2023-06-01T22:17:50Z dg43tfdfdgfd