Fan attacks goalkeeper in Championship match

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 20 October, 2012, 2:54pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 20 October, 2012, 3:01pm

Sheffield Wednesday’s former England goalkeeper Chris Kirkland was assaulted by a fan who ran onto the pitch during his team’s Championship match against Leeds on Friday.

Kirkland had just conceded a 77th minute equaliser as Leeds came back to draw 1-1 in the Yorkshire derby when the man ran onto the pitch from the Leeds supporters’ end and struck him in the face – sending the 31-year-old keeper to the ground. Kirkland received treatment before continuing the match.

The fan meanwhile returned to the stand while trouble continued around him, with a number of other visiting supporters running on and off the field and stewards struggling to contain them.

Trouble had been brewing throughout the second-tier match, with a section of the Leeds fans throwing bottles on the field as they clashed with stewards and police.

Leeds manager Neil Warnock said: “I felt embarrassed to be a manager when I saw that. I thought it was an absolute disgrace. I think they should get the guy and prosecute him and put him in prison.”

Leeds later issued a statement apologising for the incident and said it “will fully co-operate with the police and the football authorities in identifying the individual concerned.”