Game between Lyon and Bastia abandoned after fans attack players | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 16.04.2017
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Game between Lyon and Bastia abandoned after fans attack players

Fans ran onto the pitch twice to attack players during a French league game between Lyon and Bastia before it was called off at the end of the first half. The incident follows disturbances at Lyon's Europa League game.

The Ligue 1 match at the home of bottom-placed Bastia was called off at the break after home fans had twice invaded the field and attacked the visiting players.

Initially, several Lyon players had been forced to flee the pitch during the warmup to escape Bastia supporters who had breached the perimeter of the field.

Sunday's game was then delayed for nearly an hour as both captains held talks over whether it should go ahead. 

With the match still goalless at the interval, Bastia fans once again became violent towards the visiting team, and further attempts to attack the players caused the game to be abandoned.

According to Lyon's club TV channel, the players were told to return to the dressing room after boarding the team bus as local officials couldn't guarantee their safety on exit.

"Bastia fans kicked balls into Gorgelin [the Lyon's keeper]'s goal. He and Memphis [Depay] tried to move them out of the way before being attacked by many SC Bastia fans," Lyon defender Jeremy Berthod said.

"The players then huddled together. They and the staff are very shocked. The moment it happened, none of them wanted to come out of the dressing room and play this match."

Alexander Lacazette, Lyon's top goal scorer, was not in the squad but tweeted: "Pffff shameful!" 

Bastia are almost certain to be hit with a serious punishment by the French league's disciplinary panel following a string of previous offenses.

The side from Corsica were forced to play three games behind closed doors in February after racist insults were aimed at Nice's Italian striker Mario Balotelli.

The latest incident comes after Lyon's UEFA Europa League quarterfinal clash with Besiktas was delayed for 15 minutes after supporters spilled on to the pitch to avoid clashes between both sets of supporters.

On Friday, UEFA, European soccer's governing body, confirmed four charges against the French club, who could face a heavy fine or play their next home match behind closed doors.

rd/mp (AFP, RTRE)

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