Bosnia Fans Nearly Threw Hands With Ukraine Supporters After Comical Accidental Flag Mix-Up

Flag buffs everywhere are laughing at this one.

Ukraine qualified for the UEFA World Cup Playoffs on Tuesday with a 2-0 victory against Bosnia and Herzegovina. Before the match there were hostile scenes as the Bosnian fans booed the Ukraine national anthem and some ultras attempted to attack the visiting Ukraine fans. This all came down to a Ukraine Bosnia flag mistake.

Seeing the two sets of fans react like this was bizarre. Bosnia and Ukraine don’t have a history of animosity like plenty of other European countries do. What could have possibly caused this vicious reaction from the home fans?

The answer: a hilarious mix-up of flags.

In case you’re not a flag buff, here are two important flags you will need to know for this story.

Russia’s Flag (with coat of arms)

Russia's Flag With Coat Of Arms

Serbia’s Flag

Serbia Flag

You will also need to know this super-simplified-and-leaving-out-a-ton-of-information history lesson. 

  • Russia and Serbia have good relations
  • Bosnia and Serbia have horrible relations
  • Ukraine and Russia have horrible relations

As a jab toward Russia, one of the Ukraine fans held an upside-down Russian flag during Ukraine’s national anthem. The Bosnian fans saw this and thought that the fan was waving a Serbia flag in an attempt to enrage and mock them.

Upside-Down Russia Flag

Serbia Flag

The rest of the game remained tense after this mistaken flag identity, but thankfully no violence occurred. I think the lesson is clear here, countries need to get more creative with their flags.

We didn’t even get around to discussing Slovenia and Slovakia… 

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