Roman Soccer Fans Will Kick, Er, Stab Your Butt

Anyway you slice it, extreme fans like to attack from behind
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted May 28, 2009 3:50 AM CDT
Barcelona fans cheer at the Trevi Fountain yesterday before the Champions League match between Manchester United and Barcelona. When a Roman team competes, rival fans have to watch their backsides.   (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca)
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(Newser) – People who attend soccer games in Rome have to watch their backsides, warns the BBC. That's because Romans are particularly fond of stabbing rival fans in the butt. Stabbings are "now so frequent they're hardly reported in the press," said a professor who has studied the attacks. "A rival fan is stabbed at nearly every Roma game." 

Romans even have a word for it—puncicate—and the practice may date to the middle ages when slashing a duelist's buttocks was considered skillful. Roman soccer fans "target the buttocks because the victim is not likely to die," said the professor. "These people don't want to kill. They want to show they can hurt their rivals and get away with it."  Experts warn that if an attack severs nerve to the leg it can cripple for life.