Police reportedly arrest Barcelona fans after riots

MADRID Thu May 28, 2009 2:41am BST

1 of 3. Catalan policemen confront Barcelona's supporters after unrest broke out in Barcelona early May 28, 2009 as Barcelona's soccer supporters celebrate their team defeat of Manchester United in the Champions League final.

Credit: Reuters/Gustau Nacarino

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MADRID (Reuters) - Spanish police arrested more than 40 people in Barcelona Wednesday night as thousands celebrated Barcelona's victory in the Champions League final, the Europa Press news agency reported.

Rioters overturning barricades, threw cans, bottles and stones at police, who responded with rubber bullets, television pictures from the centre of the city showed.

Radio station Cadena Ser reported that fans set rubbish containers alight and smashed windows, signs and traffic lights.

Police fired rubber bullets in an effort to disperse crowds in the city's main square and down its most famous thoroughfare, Las Ramblas, shortly after 2 a.m. local time (0000 GMT), Cadena Ser said.

Ambulances took injured revellers away, a Reuters witness added.

Police estimated 100,000 fans gathered in the city's Catalonia Square to watch the match and celebrate the team's 2-0 victory over Manchester United in Rome, the third time the team has won Europe's top club competition.

Police were not reachable for comment.

Two weeks ago police arrested 45 people in the same area of Barcelona in violence following the team's victory in the King's Cup final against Bilbao.

(Reporting by Ben Harding; Editing by Jon Boyle)

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