Slavia Prague’s Ondrej Kudela suspended for Arsenal game


lavia Prague defender Ondrej Kudela will miss the first leg of his side’s Europa League quarter-final with Arsenal through suspension, after Uefa opened disciplinary proceedings against him amid allegations he racially abused Rangers midfielder Glen Kamara.

Kudela, who had already been ruled out of the match through injury, has been provisionally suspended for one game with Uefa continuing to investigate the situation.

The 34-year-old was involved in an incident with Rangers midfielder Kamara during their match in the Europa League on March 18. Kamara said the Slavia defender racially abused him during the match and Police Scotland have since also launched an investigation.

Uefa have now opened proceedings against Kudela, and Kamara too, amid allegations of an altercation in the tunnel post-match, with the former provisionally suspended for one game – ruling him out of Slavia’s trip to Arsenal on Thursday.

Kamara’s lawyer, Aamer Anwar, had said last month he expected Kudela to be questioned by police when he returned to the UK for the match with Arsenal on April 8.

“Glen welcomes the police investigation into the racist abuse he faced from Kudela. Police Scotland officers are now expected to question Kudela when he returns next month on the 8 April to England to play Arsenal,” he said.

“There can never be any justification for the deeply offensive, provocative and racist language that Kudela is accused of using. A Uefa investigation is now also under way, which Glen will fully cooperate with.”

That, however, is no longer possible as Kudela is not part of the Slavia squad who are travelling to London.

He is suspended, but he had already been ruled out by the Czech side due to injury and illness.

“We were happy that he managed to travel to Wales [to play agains them with the Czech Republic], we were determined to fly to Arsenal as well,” the Slavia assistant coach Zdenek Houstecky told the club’s website.

“But he has a cold, he has virosis and fever, and after a blow to the nose he also has inflammation. He was under examination, but unfortunately he could not fly.”

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