Friesland football team cancels match over convicted murderer

The first team of VV Stanfries from Appelscha, Friesland, decided not to play against Aengwirden on Sunday because one of the Aengwirden players is a convicted murderer. The football club therefore ended the Sunday football season in fifth class, RTL Nieuws reports.

According to Dagblad van het Noorden, the player involved strangled then 19-year-old Tessa Klaver to death in 2008. He was sentenced on appeal to eight years in prison. 

This murder case is a sensitive topic for many players on the VV Stanfries team. Klaver lived in Donkerbroek, a few kilometers away from Appelscha and often rode horse in the Friesland village. 

"Because a previous conviction of a player of the opponent is still too sensitive to many players of the first team, the board decided in consultation with the players not to play this match", the football club said in a statement on their website. "We want to protect the players and the club."

Coaches Jan Boxum and Albert Oudjes would have liked to play the match, but support the players' decision, according to RTL. The club regrets that the season ended like this, but is hopeful that the team will do well again next year.