Mid-Day Ticker: Violence erupts in Euro march, Cassano's anti-gay words & more

Mid-Day Ticker: Violence erupts in Euro march, Cassano's anti-gay words & more

Euro 2012

Mid-Day Ticker: Violence erupts in Euro march, Cassano's anti-gay words & more

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WarsawPolice (Getty Images)

No matter how ready riot police in Warsaw were for Russian fans' march to commemorate their independence day, violence and arrests seemed inevitable, and that's exactly how the pre-match festivities between Russia and Poland played out.

According to the BBC, seven people were injured and 56 others were arrested during a march carried out by Russia supporters leading up to the Euro 2012 Group A bout between co-host Poland and first-place Russia. The off-field tension between the two nations dates back for ages, and having Russians march through the Polish captial ended up being an invitation for Polish national pride to enter the picture, as supporters from both nations entered into violent actions with one another.

According to reports, 6,000 policemen were called into action for the march, which ended with tear gas and rubber bullets being sprayed at participants.

Here are a few more items to help carry you to Guatemala-USA:

CASSANO MAKES ANTI-GAY REMARKS

Antonio Cassano has gotten himself into hot water after making anti-gay remarks when addressing a media question.

When asked about the possibility of having metrosexuals and homosexuals on the Italian national team, Cassano reportedly responded, "Queers in the national team? That's their business. But I hope not."

The comments sparked immediate response from gay rights organizations in Italy, one of which suggested that Cassano be banned from the rest of the Euro 2012 tournament.

UEFA LOOKING INTO RACIST INCIDENTS

Racism continues to be a hot-button issue at Euro 2012, and UEFA is reportedly looking into separate incidents from the Spain-Italy and Russia-Czech Republic matches.

According to reports, Italian striker Mario Balotelli was the subject of racist chants during the Azzurri's 1-1 draw with Spain, while Czech defender Theodor Gebre Selassie claimed to have heard racist chants directed at him.

This comes on the heels of the Dutch national team reportedly being subjected to racist chants at a training session in the build-up to the tournament.

Neither the Italian nor Czech federations have lodged an official complaint with UEFA, which has claimed to be adopting a zero-tolerance policy on incidents of racism.

ARSENAL CLOSES IN ON GIROUD

Arsenal are nearing a deal with Montpellier and French national team striker Olivier Giroud, according to reports.

Giroud would become the second major striker signing for Arsenal, which has already added German international Lukas Podolski to its attack.

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What do you make of the pre-match march in Poland? Do you think Cassano should be reprimanded for his remarks? Do you think racism will continue to hang over Euro 2012? What do you think signing Giroud while already adding Podolski would mean for Clint Dempsey's chances at landing at Arsenal?

Share your thoughts below. 

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