Europa League clash between Marseille and Galatasaray is STOPPED for nine minutes in the first half as fans clash in the stands with FLARES thrown at rival supporters
- Marseille hosted Galatasaray in the Europa League on Thursday night
- Crowd trouble late in the first-half caused the referee to halt the match
- Supporters threw flares among other objects at their rivals mid-game
- It continued a trend of violence in French grounds, but the game restarted
The Stade Velodrome became a battleground between Marseille and Galatasaray supporters on Thursday, with scenes in the stands forcing the referee to stop play.
The Europa League match was paused for nine minutes as flares and other objects flew from all sides as the visitors clashed with their hosts.
The action was suspended from the 37th minute, when Galatasaray boss Fatih Terim and Fernando Muslera joined Dimitri Payet in attempting to cool tensions.
Play was stopped between Marseille and Galatasaray on Thursday as their supporters fought
The referee paused the game 37 minutes into the contest as flares were thrown at the stands
Other object were seen flying between the supporter groups as players pleaded with fans
Riot police were deployed and charged into the stands, clearing the trouble so the first-half could get going again.
The match was goalless at half-time and neither side could find a goal in the second, ending 0-0 to leave the French side still winless in Group E.
Marseille have been at the heart of a violent return of fans to Ligue 1 stadiums this season, with Thursday’s Europa League drama the latest of many incidents.
Dimitri Payet was floored by a bottle thrown from Nice’s end during a French league clash between the French Riviera rivals back in August, sparking a melee which forced the game to be abandoned at the 75th minute.
The incident has continued a trend of violence in French football since the return of fans
The fixture will be replayed at a neutral venue next month. Fans will be shut-out then, and Nice are currently serving a punishment of three additional behind-closed-doors matches.
The match got back underway nine minutes after the stoppage, eventually ending 0-0
Marseille supporters have also now been banned from attending away matches until further notice.
They stormed the pitch after the final whistle of the Cote d’Azur club’s 0-0 draw with Angers, as ugly scenes of fighting unfolded.
The embarrassment has caused Ligue 1 to also close part of Angers’ stadium, with Marseille fans forced to wait for the conclusion of an investigation to find out when they can return to away fixtures.