Monday, May 12, 2008

Trouble at The Riverside

Cleveland Police have confirmed one of their officers needed hospital treatment after violent scenes towards the end of Middlesbrough's 8-1 victory over Manchester City at the weekend.

A section of City fans clashed with police and stewards during the final minutes of the match.

Ugly scenes saw seats ripped out and thrown at officers before dog handlers helped get the situation under control, an incident which delayed the end of season parade by Boro's players.

Match commander Martin Campbell has revealed that one of his officers was taken to hospital.

>>sky sports

I didn't catch much of this story until today when the news reports started filtering through, but it seems that the police are firmly pointing the finger at City fans for the incident:

"After a full debrief and having spoken to a club steward, it appears that towards the end of the game a visiting fan removed a 4ft long metal safety barrier which was in place to prevent access to the pitch," he said.

"Fearing that it could be used as a weapon or to gain access on to the playing area, an officer removed this barrier and a skirmish then took place, spreading into other areas of the crowd.

"At this point officers began to come under attack as seats were pulled off and a number of police officers were struck by seats, one fully in the face.

"Police reinforcements were immediately called into the ground. Other officers suffered minor injuries, with only one requiring hospital treatment for an injury to his hand.

"I would like to praise the match referee who did an excellent job; it seems he was fully aware of the unfolding events and he ensured that players were swiftly removed from the pitch at the end of the game.

"Middlesbrough supporters too were extremely well natured and I'd like to praise them too. It is a shame that such a fantastic end to the season and what was always intended to be a great family occasion was marred by the behaviour of a small minority."

I've not dug up any photos on flickr, but YouTube has bits of 'citizen journalism' posted up, mainly from City fans who are far more accusatory towards the police.

vote it up!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So, if the City fan removed the barrier - how could the policeman subsequently remove it aswell? Were there 2 barriers? Did he remove it from the fan? Did the fan put it back and then the policeman removed it? Or did something else happen and its portrayed in a detremental manner towards the fans?

Nice statement - clear as mud, really!