Fan charged over coin thrown at linesman

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The Independent Football

A football supporter who allegedly threw a coin that hit an assistant referee during a Barclays Premier League match was today charged with battery.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said there was sufficient evidence to charge the 43-year-old man over the incident, which saw Phil Sharp struck by a 50p coin at Aston Villa's home clash with Portsmouth on 18 October.

The official was hit on the forehead at Villa Park towards the end of the goalless draw.

He needed treatment for a substantial cut before being able to complete the game.

Announcing the charges, Martin Lindop, assistant district crown prosecutor for Birmingham, said: "Following a detailed and careful review of the file, a decision has been reached that there is sufficient evidence and it is in the public interest."

The man will appear at Birmingham Magistrates' Court on Thursday.

The Football Association launched an investigation following the incident and calls were made for the man to be banned for life.

Villa were quick to condemn the incident, which happened in front of the dug-out.

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