Porto apologizes for Chapecoense chants in handball match

Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images

LISBON, Portugal (AP) FC Porto’s president has apologized for his club’s fans chanting that they wished rivals Benfica had been on board the plane that crashed with Brazilian team Chapecoense.

Some Porto fans chanted “I wish Benfica had been on Chapecoense’s plane” during a handball match between Porto and Benfica on Wednesday.

In a letter provided by the club to The Associated Press, Porto president Jorge Nuno Pinto da Costa wrote to Chapecoense to apologize for “the insulting chants.”

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Pinto da Costa added that Porto would like to help the Brazilian club rebuild from the November 2016 crash that took the lives of most of its team.

The crash in Colombia killed 71 of 77 people on board, including 19 Chapecoense players.

Huge football rivals in Portugal, Porto and Benfica also compete in other sports, including handball.

Porto won the match on Wednesday and leads the Portuguese handball league.