The attack by a group of AZ-hooligans on a group of West Ham United-supporters, including players' friends and family, after the Conference League semi-final match between the two clubs has caused outrage everywhere. 'Downright deranged', was former Hammer Joe Cole's reaction, on British television.
'This is absurd,' the 56-time international said. 'Grown people attacking the family of West Ham players. You really have to look at UEFA in this as well, because the same thing happened against Eintracht Frankfurt last year. AZ fans arriving with balaclavas and throwing punches at random people. It's absolutely ridiculous.'
After the match in the semi-finals of the Conference League, supporters of AZ stormed the main stand of the AFAS Stadium. It was the section where friends and relatives of West Ham players were located. Upon noticing what was going on, the West Ham players rushed to the stands to intervene. The AZ-players, as well as manager Pascal Jansen and director Robert Eenhoorn also tried to intervene.
Police and stewards were on the scene fairly quickly to prevent further escalation. After about ten minutes, the situation was under control. Other AZ supporters whistled en booed to express their dissatisfaction with the misbehaviour of some of their own supporters. The hooligans did not appreciate this reaction and tensions also arose between them and other AZ-supporters.
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