UEFA fines Rangers and bans fans

LONDON - UEFA fined Rangers 40,000 euros on Thursday and banned the Glasgow club's fans from their next away game in Europe for discriminatory chanting in a Europa League match against PSV Eindhoven last month.

European football's ruling body said on its website that Rangers would be "restricted from selling any tickets to its supporters for two away matches in UEFA club competition."

However, the second match ban was suspended for three years.

UEFA's control and disciplinary committee also ordered the Scottish club to play their next home European match behind closed doors although that sanction also carried a similar three-year probationary period.

Rangers, who lost 1-0 on aggregate to PSV in the last-16, said in a statement they condemned sectarianism and were considering an appeal.

The club have frequently been in trouble with UEFA over the issue of sectarian and offensive chants and the latest case was the fourth they had faced in five years.

"We are bitterly disappointed our club has been placed in a position where we are subjected to these kind of sanctions by UEFA," said chief executive Martin Bain.

"We will consider our position when we receive the written reasons for the decision which are expected in a week or so."

"The club put its own case very forcibly to UEFA and the more draconian sanctions that were recommended by the disciplinary inspector have been mitigated to a degree," added Bain.

"To be clear we condemn sectarianism and there is no doubt the mindless behaviour of an element of our support has exposed the club to a very serious situation. The people who engage in this type of behaviour are damaging the club they claim to support."