Wolves fans will not be allowed to watch the team in their Europa League tie at ŠK Slovan Bratislava after UEFA ruled the game will be played behind closed doors.
The Slovakia side’s appeal against the ruling was rejected by UEFA after a number of supporter incidents during their Europa League play-off fixture against Greek side PAOK FC on August 22.
UEFA’s sanction means Wolves supporters won’t be able to attend the Group K game on October 24, which will come as a major blow to fans hoping to follow the team during the club’s first European campaign in almost 40 years.
Wolves chairman Jeff Shi said: “Whilst we fully respect UEFA’s obligation to punish unacceptable behaviour by opposition supporters, we are deeply disappointed that this decision will ultimately affect our own fans and their ability to support the team.
“We have understandably explored all avenues to find a way in which to remedy this situation, but unfortunately we have been advised that there is no way around this decision.”
UEFA also fined Slovan 50,000 euros, plus 41,750 euros for other charges including fan disorder, amounting to £82,000.
For the Wolves game, Slovan have also been ordered to parade a banner with the words ‘#EqualGame’, with the UEFA logo on it.
The game will be broadcast live on BT Sport, but some Wolves fans are still planning on going to Bratislava, with the intention of watching the game on TV in a local bar.
The stadium, Tehelne pole, will not be empty either. New rules allow accompanied children up to the age of 14 from schools and football academies to attend behind-closed-doors matches free of charge.
Around 5,000 children watched Slovan’s last Europa home game – a 4-2 win against Besiktas – despite a behind-closed-doors sanction.
Tehelné pole is a new, enclosed stadium, holding 22,500, having been completed in 2018.
ŠK Slovan Bratislava are leaders of Group K with four points after drawing 2-2 at Sporting Club Braga in their last Europa League game.
The only previous time Wolves fans were banned from watching their team away from home was during the 1987-88 season after incidents marred the opening game of the season at Scarborough.
Wolves supporters were banned from the club’s next six away fixtures in Division Four.