A journalist was assaulted after a play between Ajaccio and Marseille on Sunday, prompting prosecutors in southern France to launch an investigation into the matter. This marks the second instance of violence to occur at a French event in as many days.
Saturday’s match between Ajaccio and their local rivals on the island of Corsica, which they won 1-0 despite the heated atmosphere, was played against Ajaccio.
After the match, some Marseille supporters confronted and assaulted a journalist working for France 3 TV at a gas station close to the stadium.
According to an AFP reporter who was there at the incident, he was transported to the hospital for treatment of “wounds on his face.”
“Initial evidence points to serious acts of violence committed by a group of individuals who we are trying to identify,” said Nicolas Septe, the top prosecutor of Ajaccio’s office of public prosecution.
He stated that the France 3 journalist suffered “quite serious injuries despite the fact that there is no risk to his life.”
A related incident included a youngster with cancer who was invited to see the Marseille players. While at the stadium, the child and his parents were pushed and shoved by Ajaccio supporters, which the Corsican club described as “unspeakable” behavior.
“The dream swiftly became a nightmare when Kenzo and his parents, who were wearing Marseille’s colors, were shamefully jostled by individuals who got into their box,” the club stated in a statement. “Kenzo and his parents were wearing Marseille’s colors.”
“As soon as our staff is able to positively identify these individuals, we will initiate legal action against them,”
Stephane Sbraggia, the mayor of Ajaccio, stated that the attacks on the journalist and the circumstances around the child “point to a worrying loss of values” in the community.
It was the second violent incident involving French football fans in the span of two days.
After an assault on a player from their opponents Rodez, a critical match in the French second division promotion race had to be abandoned. On Saturday, four individuals were arrested in Bordeaux following the incident, which resulted to the match being abandoned.
On Friday, a match between Bordeaux, who were playing as the home team, and Rodez, who were the visitors, were stopped in the middle of the first half when a home supporter ran onto the field and shoved over a Rodez player named Lucas Buades, who had just scored for the away team.
The match was put on hold, and it did not continue when it was stopped.
According to the source, the alleged perpetrator of the attack was one of those who was brought into prison. According to a report that was published in a local daily in Bordeaux called Sud Ouest, he was a man of 45 years old who lived in the city of Annecy.
The referee told the police that Buades was left with concussion-like symptoms when the suspect invaded the playing field and “violently pushed” him.
On Monday, representatives from the French League (LFP) will get together to talk about the incident that cast a shadow over the final night of the Ligue 2 season.