Hooligans riot following Polish cup final

Sunday 23 October 2011 02:00

Hooligans clashed with police and damaged the stadium after Legia Warsaw won the Polish Cup final 5-4 on penalties against Lech Poznan in Bydgoszcz last night.

Fans invaded the pitch, demolished barriers and damaged the tribune as well as attacking press photographers before police got the situation under control by using water cannon.

The riot, seen by representatives from European soccer's governing body UEFA and the government who were in attendance, was immediately condemned by Polish officials.

Prime Minister Donald Tusk, whose country is due to co-host the 2012 European championships with Ukraine, has asked police and the interior minister for more information about the riot.

The match had finished 1-1 after 90 minutes.

"Surely there will be a strong reaction from the government, this just can't take place any longer," government spokesman Pawel Gras said on the daily Gazeta Wyborcza's website.

In March, Lithuanian police made more than 10 arrests and fired teargas at several hundred Polish fans who threw stones and bottles outside the Darius and Girenas stadium in Kaunas before and during a friendly match which their team lost 2-0.

Poland has been already criticised by UEFA officials over hooliganism, which is says is destroying the country's image.

The Polish government has already announced new legislation to tackle football violence similar to the laws brought in by Germany for the 2006 World Cup.

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