100+ pepper-spraying policemen attacked Schalke fans to remove a provocative Macedonian flag

So here’s the background.

Greek club PAOK has long-established roots to Macedonia following the population exchange between Greece and Turkey in 1923, with PAOK fans known for having a deep-rooted hatred for all things Macedonian following that historical event.

During Wednesday night’s Champions League match between Schalke and PAOK in Germany, a handful of Schalke fans unfurled a Macedonian flag in the north stand of the stadium in an attempt to provoke the visitors.

Rather than upset the travelling supporters though, the Schalke fans received a strong backlash from the local police at the Veltins-Arena in Gelsenkirchen.

After the flag was made visible in the home crowd, hundreds of police piled into the Schalke section to remove the offending object. The police were heavy-handed in their response, using pepper-spray and batons on Schalke’s ultras and leaving many German fans in considerable physical pain.

Footage of the police taking on the Schalke supporters can be seen below.