Blackpool match abandoned

2015-05-02 17:10
soccer ball (File)

London - Blackpool's Championship match against Huddersfield was abandoned after hundreds of fans poured onto the pitch to protest against the relegated club's owners.

The Seasiders have endured a miserable campaign spent with the team rooted to the bottom of the second tier table and they were condemned to relegation to League One several weeks ago.

After numerous protests against Blackpool owners the Oyston family throughout the season failed to persuade them to sell up, disillusioned supporters made one last attempt to show their anger at the way the club has been run since their relegation from the Premier League in 2011.

Around 200 fans made a pre-planned pitch invasion in the 48th minute and staged a sit-down protest in the centre circle, with some waving a banner reading "Love Blackpool Hate Oyston".

There was no sign of any violence and stewards allowed the demo to continue, but referee Mick Russell took the players off and the match, level at 0-0, was halted for over an hour before finally being abandoned with no sign of the fans leaving the pitch.

The protesters had reportedly planned to start their campaign earlier in the day at the statue of Blackpool legend Stan Mortensen - on the 62nd anniversary of his famous FA Cup final hat-trick - but the club had temporarily removed it.

Blackpool supporters still demonstrated outside the stadium before kick-off, with chants continuing throughout the match.

That ill-feeling reached fever pitch when hundreds flooded out of the stands to show their disgust at the reign of chairman Karl Oyston and owner Owen Oyston.

Flares were released and the scene soon became farcical as some fans began a conga, while a supporter in a mobility scooter drove onto the pitch.

Blackpool will face a Football Association investigation and could be hit with a fine or a points deduction.

A Football League spokesman said: "Following the abandonment of today's match at Bloomfield Road, it will be for the Football Association to consider any matters relating to crowd behaviour with the Football League ruling on whether or not the match should be replayed."

Read more on:    blackpool  |  soccer

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