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Watch: French football hit by fresh shame

Crowd trouble in French football continued on Friday as a cup match had to be abandoned due to fans clashing.

Ligue 2 team Paris FC were taking on Ligue 1 giants Lyon in a round of 64 meeting when the incident occurred.

With the score tied 1-1 at the former’s Charletty Stadium, half-time saw both sets of fans throw flares at one another while home-made fireworks also exploded.

Security and police headed towards the stands to try and contain the offending parties, but spectators then made their way onto the pitch and prevented play from resuming in scenes that have become commonplace in France this season.

The match referee and players had to go back to their respective changing rooms. Around 10 minutes later the public returned to their seats after officials successfully managed to intervene and the stadium announcer called for calm.

Later, though, he returned to the tannoy to say the match was being abandoned.

French football has been marred by violence this season, and this is the second time in the current campaign that a match involving Lyon has been abandoned.

In November, they were docked a point in the French top flight, Ligue 1, after Dimitri Payet of Olympique Marseille was hit by a bottle a fan had thrown from the stands.

“Once again, we’re going to see a match interrupted by idiots. It’s not what I want the English, Spanish and Italians to see of the French league,” said Arsenal and France legend Thierry Henry on pundit duties, while also calling for lifetime bans for the offenders.

In August, Payet had also clashed with supporters in the Mediterranean Derby for which Nice were docked two points.

September saw further incidents, as a Northern Derby showdown between reigning champions Lille and RC Lens saw the second half delayed when fans threw objects at one another and stormed the pitch to trigger a riot police intervention.

Amid other trouble in Montpellier, Angers, Marseille and St Etienne, the French government announced on Thursday this week that matches will be abandoned if either player or the referee is injured by projectiles thrown from the terraces.

Vincent Labrune, who is the president of the Ligue de Football Professionnel, has described the topic as “a gangrene that could kill us” while urging dialogue between the establishment and his officials to stem the trouble.

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Source:RT News

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