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Red Star Belgrade celebrate on armored vehicle after UEFA Champions League qualification

Red Star Belgrade reached the group stages of UEFA Champions League for the second straight season following a 1-1 draw with Swiss champion BSC Young Boys.

By: AP | Belgrade | Updated: August 28, 2019 11:37:22 pm
Red Star Belgrade’s supporters and players celebrate with flares on top of an armored troop carrier. (AP Photo)

Red Star Belgrade fans packed into an open-top armored troop carrier with some players to mark their Champions League qualification, after parking a battle tank at the gates of their stadium,

The Serbian team reached the group stage of the European soccer competition for the second straight season following a 1-1 draw with Swiss champion BSC Young Boys on Tuesday.

The crowd at the Rajko Mitic Stadium in the UEFA Champions League qualifier against BSC Young Boys. (Source: Twitter/@DavidVujanic)

After the match, Red Star fans and players joined the late-night victory parade on the streets of the Serbian capital by riding on a large armored personnel carrier.

A kid poses with former Yugoslav army T-55 battle tank outside of Rajko Mitic Stadium in Belgrade. (Source: AP Photo)

It was not clear who provided both the troop carrier and the T-55 battle tank which triggered angry reaction in Croatia because they say it symbolizes the Serb-led army intervention during the bloody breakup of the Yugoslav federation in the 1990s.

The decommissioned Yugoslav army tank once used during the bloody breakup of former Yugoslavia in 1990s, was parked in front of the Red Star stadium before Tuesday’s UEFA Champions League qualifier against Swiss champion Young Boys.

In a tit-for-tat move, Dinamo Zagreb fans responded by parking a rusty tractor in front of their stadium in the Croatian capital.

The tractor symbolizes the exodus of tens of thousands of Serbs from Croatia in 1995 during a Croatian army offensive to retake the rebel Serb enclaves at the end of the war for independence. The Croatian Serbs fled mostly on tractor-trailers.

Dinamo also qualified for the group stage of the Champions League after a 1-1 draw against Rosenborg on Tuesday.

Red Star Belgrade had qualified last year, but was knocked out from the group stages after being placed in the same group as Liverpool, Paris Saint-Germain, and Napoli.

The Serbian side would look to better their chances this year and qualify for the knockout stages. The UEFA Champions League draw is on August 29.

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