Chris Smalling of Manchester United was also approached by a fan later on the same day against Arsenal
By Joe Coleman
15th March 2019,
Updated: 15th March 2019,
The FA, Premier League and EFL have promised to deliver the ‘strongest possible sanctions’ for future pitch invaders.
Last Sunday, Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish was punched from behind by a crazed fan during the ‘Second City’ derby against Birmingham City at St Andrews.
Paul Mitchell attacked Jack Grealish from behind last Sunday Just a few hours later, an Arsenal supporter ran onto the pitch to celebrate with the team, appearing to shove Manchester United defender Chris Smalling in the process.
Although Paul Mitchell was sentenced to 14 weeks in prison, Arsenal and Birmingham City were both charged by the FA and game’s national governing body has combined with the Premier League and the English Football League to speak out.
A joint statement read: “The FA, Premier League and EFL strongly condemn the reprehensible actions of supporters who entered the field of play last weekend.
“English football has worked hard over many years to ensure that our grounds are safe places. Everyone involved in staging a game deserves to enjoy the highest safety standards and we are determined to prevent these standards from being undermined.
An Arsenal supporter appeared to shove Smalling “It is essential that all players feel safe and supported every time they go on the pitch and there is absolutely no place for any type of behaviour that puts this at risk.
“We also acknowledge that the overwhelming majority of fans attend football matches to support their team in a positive manner and we will continue to work with those fans, clubs and stakeholders to generate the best possible atmosphere at games.
“Anyone who attends a match to threaten this principle, either from the stands or by entering the field of play, will face the strongest possible sanctions.”