Oct 20, 2013, 3:53 PM EST
This incident could have been much worse. Thankfully, nobody was seriously hurt, though that doesn’t excuse the idiocy that transpired during the first half at Villa Park.
Just past the half-hour, assistant referee David Bryan was hit just below the new by a smoke bomb lobbed from the Tottenham supporters’ section, an incident that’s already sparked an investigation from England’s Football Association. The device, thrown from the Doug Ellis Stand after an Andros Townsend goal, hit Bryan between the shoulder blades, and while there was a momentary pause, Bryan was uninjured.
Via Twitter, West Midlands police announced the arrest of two men in connection with the incident.
“Police have arrested 2 men after a lit flare was thrown on the pitch during the Villa v Spurs game – the flare hit a linesman. The two men aged 25 and 47 were arrested following the incident at Villa Park. Fortunately the linesman wasn’t injured.”
Asked about the incident after the match, Tottenham manager André Villas-Boas issued the obligatory condemnation:
“Obviously it is not great to see. It should be avoided completely. I think it touched the linesman.
“I think situations like this do not have a place in football. I sincerely hope it does not happen again.”
The FA also issued a statement via the governing body’s Twitter account:
“The FA will investigate the matter, which is unacceptable. We will await the match officials’ report and will be speaking to the clubs. Such incidents highlight the dangers of pyrotechnics being used in a football stadium.”
In England, possession of a smoke bomb at a football ground carries a maximum sentence of three months, sanctions which take care of the criminal realm. In soccer terms, let’s hope these guys have attended their last professional match.
Nov 23, 2014, 8:19 AM EST
After missing the World Cup while rehabbing a serious ankle injury, Marco Reus is faced with yet another long road back.
Nov 23, 2014, 7:48 AM EST
With Daniel Sturridge shelved for weeks and Mario Balotelli unable to get past a groin knock, Liverpool turns to Rickie Lambert to produce goals at Selhurst Park.
Nov 22, 2014, 11:59 PM EST
On Sunday, AC Milan will play host to rivals Inter Milan in “derby della Madonnina”, and Roberto Mancini is back.
Premier League Saturday highlights: Manchester United skirts by Arsenal, Newcastle gets fifth straight win
Nov 22, 2014, 10:41 PM EST
Watch Premier League highlights from all of Saturday’s Round 12 games.
Nov 22, 2014, 9:47 PM EST
New York Red Bulls’ Designated Player Tim Cahill is far from doubting his team’s capabilities against the New England Revolution in the Eastern Conference Championship on Sunday.
Nov 22, 2014, 7:56 PM EST
La Liga weekend roundup, as it stands now.
Nov 22, 2014, 7:12 PM EST
Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho apologized to supporters for criticizing the stadium atmosphere, while praising his team’s play in a 2-0 blanking of West Brom.
Nov 22, 2014, 6:45 PM EST
Rooney: “We weathered the storm” in 2-1 victory over Arsenal.
Nov 22, 2014, 5:15 PM EST
His squad controlling possession and gathering a fair amount of chances on goal, Arsene Wenger believes his side deserved a better result against Manchester United.
Nov 22, 2014, 5:03 PM EST
One game is a rematch of the 3-3 draw that left Luis Suarez in tears, but both Palace and Liverpool have much bigger things to worry about.
Nov 22, 2014, 5:00 PM EST
All the action from the PL’s seven games on Saturday.
Nov 22, 2014, 4:45 PM EST
Elsewhere, USMNT defenders Timmy Chandler (right) and John Anthony Brooks picked up wins in 90 minutes each for their clubs.
Nov 22, 2014, 4:25 PM EST
Despite an wonderful 1-0 result over QPR to keep their winning run alive, Alan Pardew feels the pain of Ryan Taylor’s sudden injury.
Nov 22, 2014, 3:55 PM EST
Barcelona’s diminutive legend is really good at soccer.
Nov 22, 2014, 3:38 PM EST
This season, he has all his players and no excuses. So The Special One is a little ticked off that his Blues aren’t pouring forth goals to match their dominant play.
Nov 22, 2014, 3:35 PM EST
Irvine: “We actually went a goal down to a goal which I thought was offside and that makes life very difficult here.”
Nov 22, 2014, 3:32 PM EST
Red Devils surge to victory away at Arsenal, as LVG’s masterplan is taking shape.
Nov 22, 2014, 2:51 PM EST
And there’s still time Saturday to make the record his own, as the game is just at halftime.
Nov 22, 2014, 2:34 PM EST
What did we learn from United’s big win at the Emirates? Plenty. But here’s three things.
Nov 22, 2014, 2:28 PM EST
A testy affair that could’ve gotten Jack Wilshere a red card instead got him injured, and Arsenal had no finish at the Emirates.
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