UEFA President Michel Platini pays tribute to those who died on the Heysel disaster, occurred 30 years ago in Brussels. He also tries to making sure that similar tragedy will never happens again. On that fateful, Michel Platini was in the Juventus side against Liverpool FC. On the 30th anniversary of the disaster, Platini pays tribute to the 39 who died and to all those affected who will never forget.
“On the 30th anniversary of that fateful night, my thoughts are with the 39 people who lost their lives, and, of course, with their friends and families. I can only express my deepest sympathy and reiterate that I am still doing everything in my power to prevent such a tragedy from happening again,” claimed the UEFA President.
On the other hand, Eamonn McCabe went to work as a photographer at the European Cup final at the time. Once of the pictures showing the tragedy he took became a symbol of the night. It appeared in The Observer newspaper and it won an award for 1985’s news photograph of the year. He was excited about working at the game as very few games were shown love on television in those days.
The photographer became the witness of a riot happened among Liverpool and Juventus fans which caused a wall to collapse. “I grabbed one of my small cameras and I took two frames. The camera was around my neck and brought it along to get a quick close-up of the winners at the end of the game,” said McCabe. Then minutes later, McCabe realized something had gone terribly wrong as he heard screams and he saw bodies being carried on to the pitch.
“It was the worst thing I’d ever seen,” McCabe said. “I’d never seen people dying in front of me before.”
Heysel Stadium disaster occurred on 29 May 1985 when escaping fans were pressed against a collapsing wall in the Heysel Stadium in Brussels, Belgium. The tragedy happened before the start of the 1985 European Cup Final between Juventus and Liverpool. 39 people who died were mostly Juventus fans, and 600 were injured. A large group of Liverpool fans breached a fence separating them from a “neutral area” which contained mostly Juventus fans. Fans already seated near the wall were crushed, eventually the wall collapsed.
While the game between Juventus and Liverpool was played despite the disaster, in order to prevent further violence, with Juventus winning 1-0. The disaster was later described as “the darkest hour in the history of the UEFA competitions.”