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Marseille president Labrune calls for supporters to help tackle fan trouble

Marseille president Vincent Labrune has appealed to the club’s supporters to help identify fans who were involved in the disturbances that marred Sunday’s 1-1 draw against Lyon.

Playmaker Mathieu Valbuena returned to Marseille for the first time as a Lyon players and received a hostile reception that culminated in a hail of objects being thrown at the player when he went to take a second-half corner.

The teams were taken from the field for 23 minutes as a result of the incident – scenes that French sports minister Thierry Braillard described as “unacceptable” as he called for action ahead of his country hosting Euro 2016.

Writing in Le Parisien, Labrune said: “We work in harmony with the government, but we are seekers of strengthening security at the stadium.

“Now we need the supporters groups help us identify troublemakers. We’re talking about 50-60 people.

“I am the main target of these people, so let no one tell me that it is I who gives them power.”

Labrune played down the notion that Marseille have a serious hooligan problem to tackle and outlined the extended security provisions undertaken ahead of the weekend match.

“We have very few incidents in recent years,” he said. “Unfortunately, zero risk does not exist.

“There have been slippages on Sunday. Ironically, it happened the day we had the biggest [security detail] – 750 stewards, 18 dog handlers, 88 home agents, 25 people on the corners, for a total cost of €250,000.

“We should not confuse 55,800 people, who came for a great atmosphere, with a few individuals who are trying to destabilize the general environment.”

Tue 22 Sep, 2015
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