Dutch police have arrested two Legia Warsaw players following their Europa Conference League match against AZ. The arrests have sparked anger in Poland. The police detained a 28-year-old man from Serbia and a 33-year-old man from Portugal after the match, which ended in a 1-0 victory for the Dutch side. The players, identified as Radovan Pankov and Josue according to Polish media reports, were taken into custody and are still being held.
According to Polish media, the players were pulled off the team coach and taken to a police station. TVP footage showed Josue being led away by police in handcuffs. The Legia president and owner, Dariusz Mioduski, was reportedly hit in the face by police, while several members of the Legia staff were struck with batons.
The reason for the arrests, as stated by Dutch police, is “harassment,” although no further details were provided. Dutch prosecutors are handling the case. Prior to the match, Legia Warsaw fans had attacked the local police force, resulting in one officer in riot gear being knocked unconscious as they forcefully entered the stadium.
The incident has caused significant concern in Poland, with Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki ordering the foreign ministry to take immediate diplomatic action to investigate the events. He emphasized that Polish players and fans must be treated in accordance with the law and expressed his disapproval of any violations.
Legia Warsaw spokesperson Bartosz Zaslawski confirmed that the team would return to Poland without Josue and Pankov. The club’s representatives, including their lawyer, are currently with the players at the police station, awaiting further developments.