By Alex Jones
A Leeds United fan has attacked Sheffield Wednesday’s goalkeeper Chris Kirkland during tonight’s game at Hillsborough.
The thug, believed to be Aaron Cawley, ran on the pitch from the away end before pushing the former England goalkeeper in the face, knocking him to the ground. (See below)
Leeds United manager Neil Warnock said he was “embarrassed” to be manager of the club.
“I thought it was an absolute disgrace. They should get the guy, prosecute him, put him in prison,” said Warnock.
“I’m not proud to be Leeds manager when I see that,” Warnock continued.
The 31-year-old goalkeeper was able to finish the game but Wednesday manager Dave Jones said the player was “sore”, “dazed” and “maybe concussed” in the dressing room.
Jones said of Leeds fans: “They should be banned from every away ground if they’re going to behave like that.”
John Mann, Labour MP for Bassetlaw and Leeds fan told the BBC: “I was at the game supporting Leeds as I have done for over 40 years. Both sets of fans were disgraceful. A sizeable group within each were coming out with relentless, abusive chanting. It’s sad. There is no question that Leeds should be banned from having away fans for a match. The collective crowd did not hand over this thug after he returned to his seat. There are people there who know him and they should be banned. That stand where the Sheffield Wednesday fans were rioting should also be shut for a match.”
Leeds United moved quickly to issue a statement:
“Leeds United Football Club would like to publicly apologise and condemn the action of the fan who came on the pitch and attacked Sheffield Wednesday goalkeeper Chris Kirkland.
“The club will fully co-operate with the police and the football authorities in identifying the individual concerned.
“After the week football has endured there is no place for this type of behaviour and the majority of Leeds supporters will be ashamed of his actions.”