Football Australia are set to dish out lifetime bans to TEN more fans following violent scenes at the Melbourne derby – as Victory face a nervous wait to see whether they are hit with a points deduction
- Ten more football hooligans are set to be hit by lifetime excursions
- Victory’s game against City descended into chaos as fans invaded the pitch
- Goalkeeper Tom Glover was struck by a metal bucket and needed stitches
- Football Australia issued two bans on Tuesday and have promised more
Football Australia (FA) is set to dish out 10 lifetime exclusions to Melbourne Victory fans involved in a violent derby pitch invasion, as the A-League powerhouse prepares to receive a likely points deduction, heavy fine and crowd bans.
Victory’s fate lies in the hands of FA after the club submitted its response to the governing body’s show cause notice.
The club had to show why they ‘should not face serious sanctions for bringing the game into disrepute’ after about 150 active fans stormed the AAMI Park pitch on Saturday night, forcing the abandonment of their A-League Men match against Melbourne City.
Football Australia is set to hand a further ten lifetime bans to fans who invaded the pitch
FA said while ‘swift action’ was important, there was no time frame on imposing sanctions on Victory.
On Tuesday, two fans, including one who allegedly hit City goalkeeper Tom Glover with a metal bucket, received life bans from attending and participating in all levels of football.
Victoria Police have charged 13 people over the pitch invasion while an additional 18 individuals have been identified following public appeals, with more charges expected to be laid.
FA chief executive James Johnson on Wednesday flagged more bans were on the way.
Investigations continue after goalkeeper Tom Glover was attacked at AAMI Park
Two fans have already been banned for life and Football Australia has promised further bans
‘We’ll be issuing more sanctions later today to individuals and we do have a show cause process we’re working through with Melbourne Victory to ensure that we ring fence this issue for the two million people that love the game,’ Johnson told ABC News Breakfast.
‘The balaclavas and the flares that were brought into the stadium is unacceptable, and part of the sanctioning process that we’re going through, if we talk about objectives, is to deter this kind of behaviour.
‘It’s to call it out and to ensure that it doesn’t happen again.
‘We’ll issue further bans to individuals today, up to 10 individuals, and we’ll also look at various sanctions that can be applied to Melbourne Victory.’
Referee Alex King suffered a head gash in the bucket incident, a television cameraman was hurt after being struck by a flare and two security guards were also injured.
The four men allegedly responsible for the most serious on-field assaults have either been charged or identified by police.
The person who allegedly threw a flare at the cameraman has been charged on summons.
Melbourne Victory also face a nervous wait over any potential sanction from the FA
Damage valued at $150,000 was caused to the venue and about 80 flares or fireworks were set off, according to police.
With Victory’s next game – against Western United at AAMI Park – scheduled for Boxing Day, FA may hand out interim sanctions in the short-term.
FA said it would work with the Australian Professional Leagues, Victory, United and AAMI Park’s operators to ‘ensure the safety of all fans, players, officials, and staff at the scheduled A-League Men’s Boxing Day match’.
FA also need to decide whether the result of Saturday’s derby will stand.
City were leading 1-0 before the match was abandoned.
Glory coach Ruben Zadkovich, who spent stints at Sydney FC, Newcastle and Perth during his playing days, expressed his shock at what unfolded during the Victory-City game.
‘As an ex player, to see someone like that get hurt from someone in the crowd is just unacceptable in every way imaginable,’ Zadkovich said.
‘I must stress, those guys down at Melbourne Victory (that entered the field) are a very small minority in the game. They don’t represent Melbourne Victory.
‘It’s important that we segregate those from the good fans and the ones that are the heartbeat of the game.’
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