In pictures: Man City v Aston Villa
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Aston Villa goalkeeper Robin Olsen was attacked after Manchester City fans invaded the pitch on Saturday, and when asked about the incident Pep Guardiola kept his comments brief with a snappy response. The Villa keeper was struck in the face when being guided towards the tunnel after City came back from behind to win 3-2.
Guardiola delivered a snappy response when being asked about the attack on Olsen after City won the title in dramatic circumstances, as he simply said “I’m so sorry” before walking off.
It looked as though it wasn’t going to City’s day as Villa initially stunned the Premier League leaders. The visitors led 2-0 heading into the final 20 minutes, with Liverpool just needing a win against Wolves to snatch the title from City’s grasp.
But just like during the 2011/12 season, they won the league after winning 3-2 on the final day, and fans invaded the pitch to celebrate their fourth title in five years. But unfortunately, yet another display of fan violence was shown towards a player, with Olsen the victim.
It was only picked up later on that the Villa keeper had been hit, and it made for ugly scenes as broadcasters took a closer look at the disturbing footage. On the pitch, the City stars were unaware of the events, and Guardiola was approached by beIN Sports and asked about the incident.
There was a rather puzzled look on Guardiola’s face, and understandably as he was none the wiser about the unfortunate event. And his quick, sharp response was followed by an abrupt exit as he went to celebrate his title win.
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It was a fantastic turnaround for City, and a deserved title win, although the manner in which events happened made for a cruel end to Liverpool’s domestic season. But the violent fan invasion is unfortunately just the latest example after Sheffield United star Billy Sharp was assaulted by a Nottingham Forest fan.
The matter was discussed on Sky Sports, and Gary Neville and Roy Keane were disgusted with the incident, with the attackers being labeled as ‘scumbags’ and ‘idiots’. Neville kicked off the complaints, as he said: “All of a sudden in these last few weeks, we’ve got these idiots not just running on the pitch but actually attacking players. What the hell are you doing?
“Running on the pitch is obviously delirious, they’ve won the league so I get that. But attacking the opposition players on the pitch, where has this come from? It’s absolutely ridiculous.”
And Keane backed Neville up, as he added: “I tell you what, a player or a manager is going to get seriously injured. If you’re mad enough to come on the pitch and punch a player then you’re mad enough to go and stab a player.
“There will be something crazy that happens. People have come back from Covid and forgot how to behave themselves. Idiots, scumbags, a disgrace.
“A player walking off a pitch and getting attacked, we’ve seen it a couple of times this week at Forest, Patrick Viera, absolutely disgraceful.” It was actually Olsen’s debut for Villa after Emiliano Martinez was rested, and unfortunately it will be a game he will never forgot, for the wrong reasons.
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