Bastia fans invade pitch, attack Lyon players
12:00 AM, April 17, 2017 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:29 PM, April 17, 2017

Bastia fans invade pitch, attack Lyon players

Dozens of Bastia fans invaded the pitch at their Armand Cesari stadium and attacked Lyon players as they warmed up for a French Ligue 1 game on Sunday.

Lyon players fled to the dressing rooms and the 1500 GMT kick-off between the two sides was consequently delayed by more than 50 minutes.

Lyon's players were finishing their pre-game warm-up when about 50 Bastia fans targeted them, an AFP reporter at the scene said.

Stewards and Lyon security staff rushed onto the pitch to intervene and for a few minutes there was chaos and scuffles until the playing surface was cleared.

Visiting Lyon initially refused to leave the changing rooms again, but eventually did so to warm up for a second time and the game kicked off soon after with stewards lined up on the edge of the pitch.

Bastia were bottom of Ligue 1 going into Sunday's match against a Lyon side who are in the European places.

It is the second time in a week that Lyon have been caught up in football violence.

Fans streamed onto the pitch in their Europa League home clash with Besiktas on Thursday and the start of the quarter-final first leg was delayed by 45 minutes as officials attempted to clear their Parc OL playing area of fans.

Home supporters poured onto the pitch as they attempted to protect themselves from firecrackers and other objects raining down from the stands above.

Both clubs blamed opposing fans for instigating much of the trouble that saw police fire tear gas to quell outbreaks of fighting and vandalism before the game. 

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