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Monday, 7 January, 2002, 10:18 GMT
FA urged to probe trouble
Police were forced to deal with a pitch invasion by fans
The Football Association is being pressed to launch an investigation after ugly post-match scenes marred Cardiff's shock FA Cup win over Leeds on Sunday.

Riot police moved in and four people were arrested on suspicion of public disorder offences as a result of violence at the third-round tie, which attracted a crowd of 22,009.

During the match, referee Andy D'Urso was struck on the head by an object, believed to be a coin thrown from the crowd.

Cardiff owner Sam Hammam stood behind the Leeds goal in the latter stages of the game and has been accused of inflaming tensions.

Referee Andy D'Urso is attended to after being hit by an object thrown from the crowd
Referee Andy D'Urso was struck by an object

Hammam was also involved in a verbal exchange an hour after the game with Leeds manager David O'Leary.

O'Leary has called on the FA to launch an inquiry into the crowd violence, and the BBC is making a formal complaint after reporter Jonathan Overend was forcibly ejected from the ground.

Trouble broke out when D'Urso blew the final whistle to seal the Welsh side's 2-1 victory at Ninian Park.

Cardiff supporters poured out of the Grange End of Ninian Park and immediately began to taunt the 2,200 Leeds fans gathered in the corner of the same stand.

Coins and other objects were hurled between the two factions, with South Wales police forced to intervene to restore order.

Cardiff fans retreated as the police moved in and there were several casualties as the melee ensued, with at least two people requiring treatment as they lay on the pitch.

There could be sanctions against the club if it is deemed they did not stop the crowd being safe and from going on to the pitch
Paul Newman
FA spokesman
A South Wales Police spokesman said: "After the game, Cardiff supporters made their way onto the pitch to celebrate their win."

"As a result, police with dogs made a sweep in order to clear them from the pitch. There were probably more than 1,000 fans on the pitch in total.

"We made four arrests, all for public disorder offences and all local people.

"We said we would not tolerate violence or disorder beforehand and we acted as soon as there was any sign of it.

"We also received complaints from the referee and linesman about being hit by objects."

Objects were also thrown by supporters during the game, the first a plastic bottle aimed at Leeds defender Ian Harte in the first minute as he waited to take a throw.

Ten minutes from time, what appeared to be a coin struck D'Urso on the side of the head and led to him requiring treatment from Cardiff physio Clive Griffiths.

Cardiff City owner Sam Hammam gestures to the Ninian Park crowd
Hammam gestures to the crowd

O'Leary said: "I hope the FA look at it, the amount of bottles thrown - small liqueur bottles - thrown at my players.

"I thought that had gone in this country. - a scandalous amount of bottles came on and hit my players."

Spokesman Paul Newman said the FA would await a report on the match from D'Urso before deciding whether to launch an investigation.

"There could be sanctions against the club if it is deemed they did not stop the crowd being safe and from going on to the pitch," he added.

Cardiff owner Sam Hammam
"On special occasions, fans do come on the pitch"
Vince Alme, Cardiff City Supporters' Club
"I think these fans should be banned for life"
Roy Schofield, Leeds United Supporters' Club
"It was disappointing to see those things"
Links to more Wales stories are at the foot of the page.


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