Marseille’s clash at rivals Nice is ABANDONED as home fans storm pitch to ATTACK visiting players after Dimitri Payet threw a bottle back into the crowd… with one ultra FLOORED by a staff member as coaches and even board members clash
- The Ligue 1 clash between Marseille and Nice was abandoned on Sunday night after fans rushed the pitch to confront Marseille player Dimitri Payet
- Payet had been struck with a bottle by a Nice supporter in the 75th minute
- The Frenchman threw the bottle back, sparking the chaotic scenes in Nice
- Fans spilled onto the pitch, with one being floored by a member of staff
- The game was abandoned after Marseille players refused to continue the game
A French league match between fierce rivals Nice and Marseille was abandoned on Sunday night after home supporters threw missiles at players on the pitch, sparking violent brawls between both sets of players, fans and staff members.
Marseille midfielder Dimitri Payet was hit on the back by a bottle thrown from an area with Nice fans towards the end of the game as the former West Ham star rolled on the floor before returning to his feet to angrily throw it back into the stands.
The incident saw a number of Nice fans, who had earlier been warned against throwing objects by the stadium announcer, rush the pitch to confront Payet, with footage appearing to show one Marseille staff member punch a pitch invader to the floor during the ugly scenes.
With a large number of fans spilling onto the pitch, the referee suspended the match while Marseille players stepped into to intervene, confronting the furious Nice supporters.
Both teams then retreated to the tunnel and play was held up for 90 minutes before referee Benoit Bastien declared it abandoned, with Nice players having returned to the pitch several minutes earlier while the Marseille players refused to join them.
Nice president Jean-Pierre Rivere had appealed to Nice supporters over the sound system for calm during the delay but angry Marseille players and staff were adamant in refusing to carry on.
A French league match has been abandoned after violent clashes between fans and players
Marseille players are confronted by Nice supporters during the ugly scenes on Sunday night
Marseille players are confronted on the pitch by Nice supporters at the Allianz Riviera stadium
Former West Ham midfielder Dimitri Payet was struck by a bottle thrown by a Nice supporter
During the on-pitch scuffles, an irate Marseille manager Jorge Sampaoli had to be restrained by his own staff and players as he confronted opposition stars before being led down the tunnel.
French daily L’Equipe reported that visiting players Payet, Matteo Guendouzi and Luan Peres were injured in scuffles with the crowd and riot police were deployed in front of the tier packed with Nice fans.
There were unverified photos circulating on social media of Payet with blood and scratches on his back, while more photos showed team-mates Matteo Guendouzi and Luan Peres with strangle marks on their necks.
French news outlet RMC have also claimed that Marseille’s president Pablo Longoria and former Nice player Jose Cobos had an ‘altercation’ in the presidential area during the chaotic scenes continued high up in the stands.
RMC are also reporting that Nice duo Jean Clair Todibo and Justin Kluivert were ‘struck’ by Marseille security during the violent clashes on the pitch.
An irate Marseille boss Jorge Sampaoli (centre) confronts opposition players during the chaos
Marseille duo Matteo Guendouzi (left) and Luan Peres (right) showed the nasty gashes on their necks where they were reportedly strangled by opposition fans
Marseille player Payet shows his injuries after being struck in the back by a bottle
Marseille president Longoria said: ‘We need to set precedents for French football. The referee was with us, he confirmed that to us, that safety was not assured. His decision was to abandon the match, but the LFP decided to restart the match. It is not acceptable for us.’
Nice were 1-0 up when play was interrupted after Swedish striker Kasper Dolberg fired them ahead in the 49th minute with Marseille missing a string of first-half chances.
Marseille’s refusal to continue the game means Nice have subsequently been awarded a 3-0 win, according to Ligue de Football Professionnel (LFP) rules.
Marseille will likely appeal the decision.
Marseille’s Argentine manager Jorge Sampaoli (right) confronts Nice players during the ugly scenes on the pitch
The two teams make their way back to the dressing room before the match was abandoned