As a result of Morocco’s shocking 2-0 World Cup victory over Belgium in Qatar, riots broke out in various locations across Belgium and the Netherlands.
A dozen people were arrested in Brussels when police used water cannons and tear gas to disperse protesters, and eight more were detained in the northern city of Antwerp.
In Rotterdam, a port city in the Netherlands, riot police injured two policemen when they were attacked by 500 football fans hurling pyrotechnics and broken glass at them.
In addition to these cities, Amsterdam and The Hague also experienced unrest.
To disperse the throng, authorities in Brussels had to close off sections of the city.
Brussels police spokeswoman Ilse Van de Keere said that people threw bricks at cars and set fire to stairs, and that one person was injured in the face.
Brussels Mayor Philippe Close has pleaded with soccer fans to avoid the downtown area, despite officials making every effort to maintain peace and safety.
The subway and tram service was temporarily halted at the request of the police.
“They’re not spectators; they’re rioters. There will be a gathering of Moroccan enthusiasts, “Mr. Close, he remarked.
“Sad to watch how certain people abuse a situation to go amok,” remarked Belgian Interior Minister Annelies Verlinden.
It was a major upset in the World Cup, and fans with Moroccan ancestry in several Belgian and Dutch cities welcomed the triumph.
Romain Saiss gave Morocco the lead in the 73rd minute, and Zakaria Aboukhlal scored the game-winning goal in overtime.
This means Belgium will need to beat Croatia in their final group stage match in order to advance to the knockout stages.