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Last Updated: Monday March 30 2009 13:11 GMT

Footie fans die in match stampede

Watch Ore's report

At least 19 football fans died and more than 130 others were hurt in a stampede ahead of a World Cup qualifier between Ivory Coast and Malawi, in West Africa.

It happened as thousands of fans tried to get into the stadium in the city of Abidjan, to watch Premier League stars like Chelsea's Didier Drogba play.

As crowds of supporters made a late dash to their seats before kick-off, a wall collapsed and people panicked.

Football's governing body Fifa says it wants a full report into what happened.

Officials say the stampede was caused by fans who didn't have tickets trying to get into the stadium.

A crisis meeting is being held by Ivory Coast Prime Minister Guillaume Soro on Monday with ministers and football officials to discuss the tragedy.

Didier Drogba playing for the Ivorian National football team
Didier Drogba scored two goals for the home side

Despite the crush, the game went ahead and Ivory Coast won 5-0.

Two of the goals were scored by Chelsea striker Drogba.

Other Premier League players involved included his Chelsea team-mate Salomon Kalou, and Arsenal stars Kolo Toure and Emmanuel Eboue.

Up to 36,000 fans packed into the stadium to watch the match, which is thought to have sold out after cut price tickets went on sale.


The stadium has recently been refurbished, but it's thought there were just too many people trying to get inside.

A BBC reporter said the police tried in vain to control the panicking crowd.

Over the past 10 years, hundreds of fans have died during riots and stampedes at football games across Africa, where reporters say poorly-equipped security forces are often unable to control the crowds.