UEFA will make a decision on Friday regarding the potential replacement of referee Szymon Marciniak for the upcoming Champions League final, following allegations of his affiliation with a far-right movement in Poland.
The European football governing body is currently investigating Marciniak after claims emerged that he participated in an event organized by Polish far-right leader Slawomir Mentzen.
Marciniak was appointed by UEFA last month to officiate the Champions League final between Manchester City and Inter Milan, scheduled to take place in Istanbul on June 10.
UEFA released a statement acknowledging the allegations and expressing their commitment to addressing the matter urgently. They emphasized their strong opposition to the values promoted by the group in question and assured that a thorough review of all the evidence will be conducted before a further announcement is made.
“UEFA is aware of the allegations surrounding Szymon Marciniak and is seeking urgent clarification.
“UEFA and the whole football community abhor the ‘values’ that are promoted by the group in question and takes these allegations very seriously.
“A further announcement will be made (on Friday) after reviewing all the evidence.”
Slawomir Mentzen, the co-chairman of the Confederation party, has been associated with a political slogan that opposes Jews, gays, abortion, taxation, and the European Union.
Anti-racism organization Never Again has called on UEFA to remove Marciniak from his role, citing his alleged involvement in and endorsement of an event organized by Mentzen at the International Congress Centre in Katowice. The event was reportedly attended by Marciniak as a prominent speaker.
The 42-year-old Marciniak made history as the first Polish referee to officiate a World Cup final during the tournament in Qatar in December, where Argentina defeated France in a penalty shootout.
He also refereed the second leg of Manchester City’s semi-final victory against Real Madrid and has been involved in seven other Champions League matches.