Trust criticises Pompey fans’ pitch invasion

Pompey fans on the pitch at Brentford
Pompey fans on the pitch at Brentford

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POMPEY’S prospective new owners have sent a warning out to fans who invaded the pitch at Brentford after the game on Saturday.

Around 100 supporters ran on to the pitch following Pompey’s 3-2 defeat at Griffin Park. There were some scuffles with stewards and police who tried to control the situation.

It was the first game since last week’s news at the High Court that the Trust will be gaining control of the club.

But now, there are fears that the club could face a fine for the pitch invasion – which will be paid by money invested by the fans themselves.

Ashley Brown, chairman of PST said: ‘We understand it’s been an emotional few days and the pitch invasion was largely a good-natured desire to show solidarity with the players after the events of last week.

‘However, all fans need to understand that as a community club we have a shared responsibility to ensure we represent our club and the city of Portsmouth in the best possible way.

‘We’re aware there are some suggestions of provocation and are investigating these. Regardless, supporters should not come on to the pitch.’ He added: ‘As a club, we’re likely to face a fine from the Football Association for what happened.

‘That means money fans have invested will have to be diverted from other budgets to cover this unnecessary expenditure which would be far better spent on rebuilding the club.

‘We have some fantastic fans and it has been their backing which has enabled us to complete our buy-out of Pompey. ‘We will be working with supporter groups in the coming days to ensure there is no repeat of the scenes we saw at Brentford.’

The events came the same day as Millwall fans were seen fighting after the club was knocked out of the FA Cup by Wigan at Wembley stadium.

But SOS Pompey member Bob Beech said: ‘It’s important not to blow this out of proportion. It wasn’t the same scenes we were seeing up the road at Wembley.

‘But we need to learn from this and we need to move on.

‘We want to discuss measures we can put in place for next season. We don’t want to see this happen again at community Pompey. There’s no place for this.

‘It’s a shame but hopefully we can move on.’

Pompey supporters also used Twitter to criticise the pitch invaders.

Ian Peach said: ‘Frankly embarrassed at what I saw at end of the game. Sad to say I had moment when wondered if effort of last 18 months was worth it.’

A tweet from @pompeys12thman added: ‘Not often I will tweet anything too controversial but those scenes at the end were hardly an advert for a community football club.’

No-one from the FA was available for comment.

Video: Pompey fans’ pitch invasion