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UEFA to investigate Lazio chants
UEFA have confirmed they have opened disciplinary proceedings against Lazio for the alleged racist behaviour of some of their fans during Thursday night's Europa League clash against Tottenham.
Aaron Lennon, Jermain Defoe and Andros Townsend all appeared to be the subject of monkey chants from the away end during Spurs' 0-0 stalemate against the Italian side at White Hart Lane.
After receiving reports from referee Ovidiu Alin Hategan and match delegate Adonis Procopiou, European football's governing body charged the Rome-based club with improper conduct.
A statement read: "UEFA has opened disciplinary proceedings against S.S. Lazio for the improper conduct of the club's supporters (racist behaviour) during the UEFA Europa League group stage match on Thursday 20 September between Tottenham Hotspur FC and the Italian side."
UEFA's Control and Disciplinary Body will hear the case on October 18.
Article 11 of UEFA's disciplinary regulations states that Lazio can expect a fine of 20,000 euros (around £16,000) if their fans are found guilty of racial abuse. Should they decide further action is deserved, UEFA could force Lazio to play one or more of their games behind closed doors.
They could even be stripped of some of their points or disqualified from the competition altogether, although this punishment is likely to be meted out in only the most extreme cases.
UEFA have come in for criticism for the punishments they have dished out for racism in recent times.
Last season UEFA fined Porto £16,700 for their fans' racist abuse at Mario Balotelli and Yaya Toure, but then caused outrage by fining Manchester City £24,735 for being one minute late back on to the pitch after half-time during the Europa League clash.
The punishment also seemed small fry compared to the £80,000 sanction they handed down to Nicklas Bendtner for revealing a sponsor's logo on his underpants during Euro 2012.