Fans invade pitch and attack players

Ligue 1

On the weekend, a Ligue 1 match erupted into violence when Nice supporters reportedly took to the pitch to fight with Olympique Marseille players.  

A French top-flight fixture between Nice and Marseille was abandoned on Sunday night after some home supporters ran on to the pitch, sparking violent clashes between players, fans and staff members. 

Scroll through the gallery above to see some of the violent scenes that took place

According to the Daily Mail, the discontent started when former West Ham United midfielder Dimitri Payet, who was preparing to take a corner-kick, was hit on the back by a bottle thrown from an area of the stadium containing Nice fans, and he angrily responded by throwing the bottle back into the crowd.

Angry supporters then rushed on to the pitch to confront Payet, with his teammates rushing to his aid to try to protect him. Footage also appeared to show one of the 34-year-old's colleagues, a staff member, punching a pitch invader during the chaotic scenes. 

Read: Player swings punches at own teammate

The number of fans spilling on to the field continued to grow, leaving the referee with no choice but to temporarily suspend the match, while the players and staff defended themselves as security struggled to keep up with the increasing numbers of supporters invading the pitch, before both teams left the pitch.

According to French publication L'Equipe, Marseille stars Payet, Matteo Guendouzi and Luan Peres were injured in scuffles with the crowd, with photos of Peres and Guendouzi showing bruises on their necks later doing the rounds on social media, while Nice stars Jean-Clair Todibo and Justin Kluivert were also reportedly hurt in the scuffles.

It is further claimed by RMC that the violence did not stay on the pitch, with Marseille president Pablo Longoria and former Nice player Jose Cobos having reportedly had an "altercation" of their own in the presidential area in the stands.

With Marseille refusing to restart after things calmed down eventually, Ligue de Football Professionnel (LFP) rules state that their refusal to continue the game means that home team Nice were awarded a 3-0 win, but the club is expected to appeal this decision.

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