PLAYERS AND STAFF from Calverton Miners Welfare FC were locked in a boiler room at the Red Bull Arena in Salzburg on Tuesday night.
They were apparently lured inside after being told it was the visitors’ changing room and were then unable to compete against FC Red Bull Salzburg in UEFA Champions League Group E.
‘We’re totally gutted,’ said Miners Welfare skipper Stevie Stokes.
‘That UEFA official seemed a bit odd with his Belgian accent and the fake droopy moustache. But before we knew it he’d waved us through a door and locked it behind us. We were there all night and let out by a cleaner on Wednesday.
‘It was really dark in there and Nige Nichols burned his arse on a pipe.’
The fixture went ahead anyway when the first team squad from Belgium’s Racing Club Genk turned up at the stadium just on the off-chance.
‘No sabotage here,’ said Genk manager Felice Mazzu, tearing off a fake moustache and chucking a set of boiler room keys into the river.
‘This is not us getting revenge for Miners Welfare taking our place in the Champions League by hacking UEFA. We just happened to be passing. We’d heard Miners Welfare hadn’t turned up and we didn’t want to disappoint the fans.’
‘The several thousand Genk fans were just passing too,’ said lifelong Genk supporter Mats Ruben Wouters, last seen protesting at an airport in Monaco dressed as a Smurf.
‘This was not in any way a pre-planned, co-ordinated effort to ruin the night for Calverton Miners Welfare. Just a coincidence. All of it.’
But the night ended in triumph for FC Red Bull Salzburg with a first half hat-trick from Norwegian star Erling Braut Haaland breaking Belgian hearts as the Austrian side cruised to a 6-2 victory.
‘Maybe Genk should have locked us in the boiler room too,’ said Haaland.
‘They were total pants.’
‘We’ll look into the Miners Welfare complaint next week,’ said a UEFA spokesman.
‘Just as soon as we’ve stopped laughing. Morons.’
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