Fan violence delays Lyon-Besiktas game in Europa League
ABS-CBN Sports on Apr 14, 2017 10:21 AM
A police officer tries to stop supporters as they invade the pitch a few minutes before the Europa League quarterfinal soccer match between Lyon and Besiktas, in Decines, near Lyon, central France, Thursday, April 13, 2017. (AP Photo/Laurent Cipriani)LYON, France (AP) — Crowd disorder delayed the Lyon-Besiktas kickoff by 45 minutes in the Europa League quarterfinals on Thursday.
Incidents inside Lyon's stadium — which will host the final next season — followed fighting among rival French and Turkish fans earlier in the city.
About 20 minutes before the scheduled 9:05 p.m. (1905 GMT) kickoff, fans spilled on to the field for their own safety as fireworks were set off and missiles thrown from an upper section of the stadium housing Besiktas supporters.
Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas was among the officials on the pitch trying to restore calm.
The quarterfinals first-leg game kicked off at 9:50 p.m. (1950 GMT) .The return game is in Istanbul next Thursday.
UEFA has increased security measures at its Champions League and Europa League matches this week after Borussia Dortmund's team bus was targeted by a bomb attack on Tuesday. Defender Marc Bartra needed surgery for arm injuries.
Dortmund's game against Monaco in the Champions League quarterfinals was postponed and played on Wednesday.