Thu, Feb 22, 2007 - Page 8 News List

Madrid to protest against van Bommel

AP , MADRID

Real Madrid will reportedly protest to UEFA over two insulting gestures made by Bayern Munich midfielder Mark van Bommel after he scored in the teams' Champions League game.

Madrid will send a report to the European body's disciplinary committee today, sports daily Marca said, adding that the Spanish club considered Tuesday's actions "an intolerable provocation."

Van Bommel, a former player with Madrid's archrival FC Barcelona, volleyed Bayern's late second goal in a 3-2 defeat at Madrid's Santiago Bernabeu Stadium.

The 29-year-old midfielder apologized, but said he had been insulted by a Madrid player about his Barcelona connections. He didn't name the player.

"It's the first time I've played at the Santiago Bernabeu and I have nothing against the crowd although I do have something against a player," he told Catalunya Radio.

Marca reacted with indignation to the incident, with its front page accompanying a photo of Van Bommel gesturing with the headline: "They're going to have to swallow this."

The paper advised Madrid players to "cut the photo out, stick it in the dressing room and don't stop looking at it until the return leg."

Sports daily As added that Madrid will also protest that Bayern substitute Hasan Salihamidzic spat at supporters behind the goal straight after Van Bommel's goal.

Van Bommel joined Bayern last August after a year with Barcelona, in which he helped the Catalan team win the Champions League and Spanish title.

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