Nottingham in the promotion final: Opposing fan boxed the captain in a space storm

Nottingham in the promotion final
Opposing fan punches the captain in the space storm

Nottingham Forest are delighted – a return to the Premier League is a possibility. As recently in Germany, the fans in England storm the pitch after entering the playoff final. One, however, is up to no good: he runs straight at the opposing captain and punches him to the ground.

Nottingham Forest and Huddersfield Town are playing for promotion to the English Premier League. Nottingham beat Sheffield United 3-2 on penalties in the semi-final second leg on Tuesday night. In the regular season, Forest lost 1:2, so that the sum of both duels was 3:3 and the penalty shoot-out had to decide. There, Forest goalkeeper Brice Samba became man of the evening with three saves. Huddersfield had previously secured a place in the Championship play-off final against Luton Town on May 29 at London’s Wembley Stadium.

After Nottingham reached the final, Sheffield captain Billy Sharp, who had not played and was standing on the sidelines, was attacked by a fan as thousands of Forest fans rushed into the field. Video footage shows a man running toward Sharp, headbutting him and throwing him to the ground with full force.

The alleged perpetrator was subsequently arrested. Nottinghamshire Police Chief Inspector Paul Hennessy said, according to the BBC: “A 31-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of assault in connection with this incident. He remains in custody and will be questioned by officers.”

Sheffield manager Paul Heckingbottom said of the incident: “It’s an assault. We saw one of our players attacked. He’s bruised, bleeding and angry. We’ll deal with it.” He also spoke of a prison sentence and promised that the perpetrator “will be held accountable”.

Nottingham Forest announced that it would work with the relevant authorities to ensure that the perpetrator would be banned from the stadium for life. Sharp had played for Nottingham Forest on loan in the 2012/2013 season.

Nottingham, who won the English Championship in 1978, the European Cup in 1979 and 1980 and the FA Cup twice, last played in the Premier League in 1999. Huddersfield were promoted to the English top flight for the first time since the Premier League was launched in 1992 in 2017, before being relegated to the Championship in 2019.

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