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Crowd trouble delays Europa League match in Lyon

21 April 2017

Lyon's Europa League quarter-final first leg with Besiktas was delayed by 45 minutes on Thursday night after fans ran onto the pitch to protect themselves from the throwing of firecrackers and projectiles.

When the match got under way, former Liverpool striker Ryan Babel put Besiktas ahead but moments after Corentin Tolisso's equaliser on 83 minutes, Jeremy Morel robbed Spanish goalkeeper Fabri in the area to tap into an empty net.

Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas then came down to the pitch in an apparent attempt to defuse the situation.

Riot police officers face supporters outside the stadium before the Europa League quarterfinal soccer match between Lyon and Besiktas, in Decines, near Lyon, central France, Thursday, April 13, 2017.

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In his post-match press conference, Lyon boss Bruno Genesio revealed he had been distressed by the incidents and on Friday it was veteran right-back Jallet's turn to express his feelings.

French media said that fans of the French and Turkish sides also clashes outside the stadium before the game and hurled missiles at each other.

"With the intense fireworks, severe injuries and homemade bombs exploding around them our fans had only one option, to take refuge on the pitch".

Clashes between rival fans started hours before the kickoff after around 15 000 Besiktas supporters arrived in Lyon, marching through the city centre and lighting dozens of flares.

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There is a return match scheduled for April 20 in Istanbul, which reportedly has a hostile reputation against visiting fans. "I do not know what to do - to play behind closed doors or elsewhere", he told AFP.

Football hooligans around the world are fighting in the stands, brawling in the streets and generally causing mayhem wherever they go.

It comes after the Dortmund coach was attacked as it travelled from the team hotel to the stadium on Tuesday for the Champions League tie with Monaco.

European football's governing body have opened an inquiry into the Europa League quarter-final first leg which was scarred by violence and a pitch invasion.

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Crowd trouble delays Europa League match in Lyon