Cologne win derby battle after hooligan clashes leave several injured | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 18.03.2018
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Cologne win derby battle after hooligan clashes leave several injured

Around 400 football hooligans clashed in the western city of Leverkusen ahead of the local derby between Bayer Leverkusen and Cologne. The incidents followed clashes between fans and police in Hamburg on Saturday.

Several people were injured during violent clashes between German football hooligans on Saturday night ahead of Sunday's Rhineland derby between Bundesliga rivals Cologne and Bayer Leverkusen. 

Police took the details of just under 200 people, confiscated weapons and combat gloves, and have launched an investigation into breach of the peace and grevious bodily harm. 

Around 250 hardcore Bayer Leverkusen "ultras" had attended their team's final training session on Saturday afternoon where they had encouraged the players with banners and pyrotechnics - the smoke from which temporarily affected traffic on the A1 motorway which runs parallel to Bayer Leverkusen's training pitches. 

Clashes 

Following the training session, the Leverkusen ultras attended the Bayer Giants' basketball game before retiring to their local "Stadioneck" pub, when cars carrying rival Cologne hooligans appeared at approximately 21:30 CET.

According to Cologne police, they were immediately attacked by the Leverkusen fans who had donned balaclavas and armed themselves with bats and car registration plates. 

Simultaneously, police report a second group of around 150 Cologne hooligans wearing white tshirts and supported by allied hooligans from Dortmund attacked the Leverkusen fans.

A video posted on Instagram shows the mob of Cologne hooligans pursuing the Leverkusen fans through the city center, where the fans then dispersed.

At approximately 22:00 CET, police took the details of around 80 Cologne hooligans at Leverkusen train station, who were about to board a train back to Cologne. Simultaneously, police took the details of around 100 Leverkusen fans at the "Stadioneck" pub. 

"The injured also dispersed and didn't identify themselves," concluded the statement from Cologne police. 

Bundesliga 1. FC Köln v Bayer 04 Leverkusen | Fans Leverkusen Pyro (Getty Images/Bongarts/A. Grimm)

Bayer Leverkusen fans set off flares and smoke bombs in the away end

Cologne win derby

The match at the RheinEnergieStadion finished 2-0 to Cologne as goals from Yuya Osako and Simon Zoller secured all three points for the Billy Goats. 

The result saw Cologne leapfrog Hamburg and move off the bottom of the table for the first time since Matchday 3. They are now only five points behind Mainz with seven games to play - but still require a miracle to stay up. 

Ahead of kick-off, Bayer Leverkusen supporters set off flares and smoke bombs in the away end but no other incidents were reported. 

Fans clash with police in Hamburg

On Saturday, fans of struggling Hamburg also clashed with police following their team's 2-1 defeat to Hertha Berlin. Following Cologne's win, HSV are bottom of the table and facing almost certain relegation from the Bundesliga for the first time in the club's history.

Scuffles broke out among the supporters themselves after the final whistle before some fans also attacked police.

mf/jh (dpa/sid)

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