THE CHAPLAIN of West Ham United, the Ven. Elwin Cockett, Archdeacon of West Ham, has condemned the violence that marred the club’s League Cup victory against Millwall on Tuesday night
One man was stabbed as fans clashed outside the stadium, and supporters fought with police and ran on to the pitch during the game. The scenes were reminiscent of the problems in football during the 1980s, when hooliganism was rife.
Archdeacon Cockett attended the match. He said afterwards that he believed the violence to have been premeditated by gangs “who had nothing to do with either of the clubs.
“They had nothing to do with football. It’s a tragedy that the game will be dragged through the mud through the action of these complete idiots who just turned up for a fight and did not have tickets for the game. It was a horrible night for football.”
He accepted that West Ham could face punishment for the incidents inside the ground, and called for fans who invaded the pitch to be banned.
It had been a “horrible week” for West Ham, he said. A defender, Calum Davenport, was stabbed in both legs early on Saturday morning; and the father of Jack Collison, a midfielder, was killed in a motorbike accident on Sunday.