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FOOTBALL

Match abandoned after firework hits referee

Sunday's Allsvenskan football match between Stockholm clubs AIK and Syrianska had to be abandoned 20 minutes into the match after an assistant referee was struck by a firecracker thrown from the crowd.

Match abandoned after firework hits referee

Violence broke out in the first half when referee Martin Strömbergsson sent off AIK’s Teteh Bangura for stamping on the opposition goalkeeper.The red card provoked violence from both sets of fans and objects rained onto the pitch, one of which caught Wärnmark on the head.

Match official Lars Wilhelmsson said, “He has definitely got tinnitus and will need to see a doctor. He still cannot hear properly.”

Once again hooliganism has cast an ugly shadow over the game here, although there are differing accounts of which set of fans actually threw the firework that hit Wärnmark.

According to Canal Plus there were about 20 objects thrown onto the pitch and Radiosporten sources claim that the firework which hit the referee came from the Syrianska fans.

AIK fans responded by raining fireworks and other objects at the home fans.

With Wärnmark taken away for treatment the players and officials were led off the pitch and after some 40 minutes of deliberating, it was decided the safest option would be to abandon the match.

Shortly afterwards, match referee Strömbergsson talked to the media and explained why the match was called off.

“It was due to the circumstances, quite simply and above all because the assistant referee received a blow just milimetres from his ear. He is in great pain. He has to go to hospital and for that reason we decided to call off the game”, he said, adding that Wärnmark is still badly shaken after the incident.

It is still unclear whether the game will be replayed and if so, when. At the time of the incident, Syrianska were leading 1-0.

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FOOTBALL

Croatian player tests positive ahead of Sweden match

Croatian midfielder Marcelo Brozovic tested positive for Covid-19 on Friday, a day ahead of the country's Nations League match with Sweden, the Croatian football federation (HNS) said.

Croatian player tests positive ahead of Sweden match
Croatian midfielder Marcelo Brozovic (left) tested positive for coronavirus on Friday. Photo: Miguel Medina / AFP
“Brozovic's Inter Milan and Swedish epidemiologists were informed about the positive test,” an HNS statement said.
   
The player's positive result came two days after defender Domagoj Vida was informed of a positive Covid-19 test after playing the first half of a friendly with Turkey in Istanbul.
   
Apart from Brozovic, 27, one staff member also tested positive.
   
They were both isolated from other members of the national team.
   
After Sweden, Croatia play another Nations League game against Portugal on Tuesday.
   
Croatia, runners-up at the 2018 World Cup, are third in their Nations League group which also includes France, the team that beat them to the World Cup, Cristiano Ronaldo's Portugal and Sweden.
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