Patrick Vieira's altercation with fan at Everton game sparks police investigation

Vieira, who was taunted by the fan, responded by grabbing the man and swinging a kick towards him

Published

Merseyside Police say they are investigating an incident which saw Crystal Palace Patrick Vieira involved in an altercation with an Everton fan.

The clash occurred after Everton came back from 2-0 down to win 3-2 against Crystal Palace at Goodison Park on Thursday night.

The victory, which secured Everton’s safety in the Premier League with one game to go, sparked a pitch invasion.

Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira
Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira
Patrick Vieira at Goodison Park
Patrick Vieira at Goodison Park

Footage posted on social media shows Vieira, unaccompanied by staff or security, making his way across the pitch towards the away dressing room, when he is confronted by a fan who appears to gesture in the Frenchman’s face.

Vieira responded by first grabbing the man and then swinging a kick at him before other supporters come to his aid and usher him away.

A statement from Merseyside Police said: "We are working with Everton FC to gather all available CCTV footage and are speaking to witnesses.

"No formal complaint has been received and enquiries into the incident are ongoing."

The FA are also understood to be looking into the incident.

While the Crystal Palace manager did not comment on the alteration after the match, his Everton counterpart Frank Lampard did.

Lampard said: “I feel for Patrick. I didn’t get him at the end. I would have said, ‘come in with us’ – although he might not have wanted that.

“Of course he ran 80 yards across the pitch and it’s not easy.”

On the pitch invasion itself Lampard said: “It was pure elation of fans who have come on the pitch after avoiding relegation.

“If it is done in the right way let them stay on the pitch, let them have their moment. As long as they behave, no problem."

The incident came just a day after a 30-year-old Nottingham Forest season-ticket holder was jailed for 24 weeks after headbutting Sheffield United striker Billy Sharp after the team's play-off semi final match earlier this week.