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Dublin: 9°C Wednesday 23 September 2020

Roma chairman fined for diving into historic fountain during last night's celebrations

James Pallotta took the plunge following his side’s incredible comeback against Barcelona.

Image: NurPhoto via Getty Images

ROMA CHAIRMAN JAMES Pallotta has been slapped with a fine after diving into the celebrations with his fans after their historic win over Barcelona on Tuesday and taking a dip a in one of the Eternal City’s most famous fountains.

Pallotta was filmed surrounded by a crowd of delirious supporters falling backwards into the fountain in Piazza del Popolo, a stone’s through from the Spanish Steps following his team’s incredible 3-0 victory, which saw Roma beat Barca on away goals and go through to the Champions League semi-finals.

Jumping into fountains is banned in Rome despite the hordes of people who want to relive Anita Ekberg’s Trevi Fountain scene from “La Dolce Vita”, and Pallotta will have to pay €450 for his plunge.

“Pallotta said sorry, he did it in a moment of excitement,” said Rome mayor Virginia Raggi, confirming reports in Italian media that the 60-year-old had called to apologise.

Billionaire Pallotta, who runs the Raptor private investment group, works out of the United States and is visiting Rome on Wednesday to discuss a new stadium project with Raggi’s city council.

“He understands the example he has to give, and he’ll pay the fine,” Raggi added.

Source: La Repubblica/YouTube

In a statement released on Wednesday morning the consumer association Codacons blasted the “very bad example for the millions of young people who follow football and Roma, who should be taught to respect public heritage and historical property”.

Rome is often mobbed by crowds of rowdy football fans, both local and foreign, who take to the city’s historic centre for pre-match drinking or post-victory celebrations.

In 2015, 500 Feyenoord supporters damaged the Barcaccia fountain at the foot of the Spanish Steps, filling it with empty beer bottles and cans.

© – AFP 2018

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