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Bastia fans charge at Lyon players in latest French crowd trouble

Reuters
NEWS
Modified 16 Apr 2017, 22:36 IST
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PARIS (Reuters) - Olympique Lyonnais players fled the pitch after being attacked by SC Bastia fans during their warm-up for Sunday's Ligue 1 clash, resulting in the match kicking off nearly an hour late.

The Lyon team ran to the dressing room after the Corsican club's supporters charged onto the field at the Stade Armand Cesari and threw punches at the visiting players.

Lyon published a tweet on their official account which read: "Bastia supporters have come on to the field to square up to Lyon players who were finishing their warm-up."

The match was due to start at 1500 GMT but was delayed. The Lyon players resumed their warm-up nearly 40 minutes later and the match eventually kicked off shortly before 1600.

Former Lyon player Jeremy Berthod told the club’s official TV station that Bastia fans threw balls at Mathieu Gorgelin’s goal. These were thrown back by Lyon forward Memphis Depay before the players were attacked by Bastia supporters.

“The players managed to get together. Both they and the coaching staff are very shocked,” said Berthod.

It is the second time in a week that Lyon have been involved in a match with ugly scenes involving fans after their Europa League clash with Besiktas at Parc Olympique Lyonnais on Thursday kicked off 45 minutes late due to crowd trouble.

European soccer's governing body UEFA began disciplinary action against Lyon and Turkish opponents Besiktas on Friday.

The French club was charged with insufficient organisation and a breach of safety regulations as their supporters blocked stairways, set off fireworks and invaded the pitch after a 2-1 win in the first leg of the quarter-final.

Turkish club Besiktas were charged after the setting off fireworks, throwing of objects and crowd disturbances.

(Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta and Rik Sharma; Editing by Clare Fallon and Ken Ferris)

Published 16 Apr 2017, 22:36 IST
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