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Three police officers injured in clashes with Legia Warsaw fans ahead of Aston Villa match

Chris Byfield

Published 
| Last updated 

Three police officers injured in clashes with Legia Warsaw fans ahead of Aston Villa match

Three Police officers have been injured after clashing with Legia Warsaw supporters ahead of a Europa Conference League game at Aston Villa.

Missiles were thrown at police by Legia Warsaw fans while the visiting supporters were held in a car park behind the Witton Lane stand.

Mail Sport claimed that Legia were unhappy with their reduced ticket allocation, which had been actioned based on advice from the police and Safety Advisory Group.

No Legia Warsaw fans were allowed into the stadium ahead of kick-off, with the game not starting on time.

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Birmingham Police released a statement on X, formerly Twitter, which read: "We're currently unable to allow away fans into Villa Park following disorder outside the stadium, which has seen missiles thrown at officers.

"Three officers have already been injured and a significant policing operation continues. Please avoid Witton Lane where possible."

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Meanwhile, in an official statement, Legia accused Villa of refusing to allocate tickets to away fans in accordance with UEFA regulations for a Europa Conference League match.

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UEFA rules stipulate that the visiting team can have five per cent of the stadium’s capacity, which would equal 2,100 tickets at Villa Park. Legia have been granted 890 tickets.

Legia's statement read: "Instead of relieving potential pre-match tensions, Aston Villa FC's restrictive measures as the host club unnecessarily exacerbate the atmosphere. In our opinion, such measures are counterproductive and baseless."

Legia supporters were met with a barrier and a wall of police officers when making their way to Villa Park ahead of kick-off.

The fans appeared to grow frustrated, with flares being let off as they were penned in by the police.

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In a statement, Villa said: "Aston Villa can confirm no away fans were allowed into Villa Park for this evening's Europa Conference League fixture with Legia Warsaw on the advice of West Midlands Police following large-scale disorder outside the stadium caused by visiting supporters," read Villa's statement.

"The UK safety authorities, UEFA and Aston Villa communicated on November 2 that the ticket allocation for away fans for this fixture would be reduced to 1,002 on the advice of safety authorities as a result of previous large-scale disorder caused by Legia fans last month at AZ Alkmaar.

"A number of Dutch police officers were injured during that disorder. As a consequence, UEFA banned Legia supporters from travelling to Mostar for their game against HSK Zrinjski.

"In spite of numerous requests for cooperation from Legia Warsaw concerning their travelling supporters, especially in the last two days, no assistance on the serious safety matter of away fans attending Villa Park was forthcoming from the visiting club.

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"The club has repeatedly, including this morning, raised concerns in conjunction with UEFA and all the relevant authorities to Legia that ticketless away supporters were attempting to attend Villa Park.

"Approximately an hour before kick-off, Legia fans engaged in planned and systematic violent acts against West Midlands Police officers and a decision was then made by West Midlands Police to exclude all Legia supporters.

"Aston Villa strongly condemns the behaviour of those visiting supporters and would like to thank West Midlands Police for their professionalism in very difficult circumstances."

SPORTbible have approached Aston Villa for comment.

Featured Image Credit: Dominik Piechota via X

Topics: Football, Europa Conference League, Aston Villa

Chris Byfield
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