Liverpool fans cover their mouths and noses as they queue to gain entry to the Stade de France (Peter Byrne)

French minister at heart of ‘fake tickets’ claim finally apologises to Liverpool fans

French interior minister Gerald Darmanin, who has been central to attempts at blaming Liverpool fans for the events at the Stade de France, has now apologised.

Darmanin, along with sports minister Amelie Oudea-Castera, has been at the heart of repeated attempts to shift blame onto supporters for the chaos outside the Champions League final.

A figure of up to 40,000 fans with fake tickets or without tickets entirely has been regularly trumpeted, as a clear lack of accountability takes hold.

In reality, the treatment of supporters – and particularly Liverpool fans – in the buildup to the final between the Reds and Real Madrid led to the horrific scenes outside the stadium in Saint-Denis.

With investigations ongoing, Darmanin has stayed in the spotlight, and in an interview with RTL, the 39-year-old has now apologised to “all those who suffered this mismanagement.”

“Should the Stade de France have been better managed? The answer is yes,” he told the French radio station.

“Do I have a share of responsibility? The answer is yes.

“I apologise very gladly for all those who suffered this mismanagement.”

Darmanin added that he had now “profoundly changed the organisation of the police headquarters” with “no difficulty” faced in meetings following the Champions League final.

As criticised by the brilliant Dan Austin, who has tirelessly reported on the aftermath of the Stade de France chaos, this apology is certainly too little, too late.

Writing on Twitter, Austin assessed Darmanin as having “shifted tactics” to “fighting against delinquency from local young adults,” and that he has “apologised simply because he knows nobody believes him.”