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UEFA’S disciplinary panel have decided to postpone a decision over whether the English Football Association should be charged with improper conduct following an outbreak of crowd trounble at last months’s EURO 2004 qualifier against Slovakia in Bratislava.

The FA were to due argue their case to UEFA, vowing to mount a vigourous defence against any charges. However, UEFA have announced that a decision over whether to charge England has been postponed until December 17.

Fighting broke out between riot police and travelling Enngland supporters during the match, but the FA claim the police over-reacted to and indeed exacerbated, the trouble.

“There was a breakdown in segregation and there were large numbers of ticketless fans in the area reserved for England,” said FA spokesman Paul Newman.

“FAstaff who were in charge of distributing tickets reported there was quite a serious crush outside the ground as fans were trying to get through the turnstiles.

“Television footage shows how many more people were crammed into that area than should have been.

“As soon as you had baton charging then people bunched together, and it became extremely dangerous.

“We are not trying to excuse misbehaviour, but the point is that we are doing the maximum we can. We are not a police force.”

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