“Jack is a Birmingham lad and regardless of club allegiance should not have been subjected to this – there are no excuses.” – Birmingham City
The EFL didn’t even wait until the end of the match to issue a statement after an idiot let his team, Birmingham City down by invading the pitch and taking a pop at Jack Grealish.
The incident sparked up memories of the on-pitch attack by a Blues fan on Peter Enckelman back in 2002. While such incidents are extremely rare in English football, the fact this is the second time a Blues fan has done it in this fixture, means Birmingham City will be under close scrutiny now as a club – especially when they constantly lead the seasonal supporter arrest table.
In the end, Grealish served up instant karma and justice on the field, after scoring a second-half winner in the 1-0 victory for Villa.
The pitch invader may face criminal charges if Grealish feels the need to press charges for the assault.
The EFL’s statement about an incident that will no doubt cause a lot of discussion, was as follows:
“It’s a situation no player should ever be faced with.
“In all circumstances the playing surface is for players, not supporters and those playing in the game must be able to do so safe in the knowledge they will not be subjected to this type of behaviour.
“Whilst this incident falls within the remit of the Football Association, we will work with all the relevant parties to address the issue of player and match officials safety on the pitch and ensure the appropriate action is taken.”
Straight after the final whistle, Birmingham City themselves issues an apology to both the player and Aston Villa, confirming a life ban for the individual that attacked Grealish.
Birmingham City Apology
“Birmingham City Football Club would like to apologise to Jack Grealish and Aston Villa Football Club for an incident in this afternoon’s derby match.
“We deplore the behaviour of the individual who committed this act and rest assured he will be banned from St. Andrew’s for life. The club will also support any further punishment this individual may face in the eyes of the law.
“The club will be working with the relevant authorities to investigate all the circumstances and we will be reviewing our stadium safety procedures.
“What happened has no place in football or society. Jack is a Birmingham lad and regardless of club allegiance should not have been subjected to this – there are no excuses.
“Again, we apologise to Jack and all at Aston Villa Football Club.”
MOMS has already been in some discussions with the Football Supporter Federation (FSF) about the incident and it will no doubt feature prominently in the next West Midlands Police Football Unit Independent Advisory Group (IAG) meeting later this month.
We’ll keep you posted.