Sportsmen tend to be competitive, and the drive to win can sometimes cross the boundary to become dangerously violent. Confrontations in team sports and individual competitions between the competitors or the supporters are very frequent. These violent occurrences spoil the aura of competition and are also a breach of rules, causing elimination and sometimes permanent suspensions of careers. Here are some of the most blazing fights and incidents that have occurred in the last decade in sports.
- Russia versus England football game, 2016
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When the unruly England fans had a fight with Russian supporters before the Group B match of the Euro cup, the UEFA has expressed a strong disgust and has threatened to kick the teams out of the tournament. Football Association’s chief executive requested the English fans to mind themselves from now on.
He said that the violence that was seen at Marseille was simply unacceptable in football and the society in general. England and Russian supporters have displayed this unruly behavior both inside and outside the stadiums, and it is estimated that about 35 people have got wounded till now.
- Greek Football cup 2015-2016
During the semi-final of the Greek Football cup between PAOK and Olympiacos, all hell broke loose when a penalty appeal was rejected and a PAOK player was sent off. This happened in the 90th minute when the midfielder Robert Mak was denied what looked like a clear penalty. When the player protested repeatedly, he was awarded the red card and sent off. This set the audience in fumes, and the angry mob stormed the pitch causing havoc. The Greek government has forsaken the Greek Cup, which currently stands canceled.
- Brazil League Soccer Match
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When the supporters of Vasco da Gama and Atletico Paranaense had a brawl in the stands, every household in Brazil witnessed a violent outbreak in sports. During the first half of the game of 2013, supporters started fighting in the stand, and the game had to be suspended for an hour. The horror was televised and was seen by the world. It is estimated that over 150 people have died in Brazil due to violence in football stadiums. Another such incident was seen in 2014 when three toilets were ripped and thrown at fans in the stands. One of these hit a 26-year old, killing him instantly.
- FIFA World Cup 2014
After Argentina lost the FIFA World Cup 1-0 to Germany in 2014, a lot of emotions must have raced through the Argentine fans. The most devastating one turned up when dozens of fans called the “barrabravas” began stoning the policemen that were stationed to watch over the mob. The riot police responded with tear gas and rubber bullets, and the streets soon turned into a haze of families running into restaurants to avoid the violence. Fifteen policemen were injured in this riot and some 40 people were arrested.
- 2014 AFF Suzuki Cup
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When Vietnam chased Malaysia in the AFF 2014 Suzuki cup, it did not look like the guest players had a shot at winning. But soon the game shifted to favor the Vietnamese, and they ended the series with a 2-1 win over Malaysia. The game took a turn for the ugly when Malaysian supporters rushed through the stands to physically assault the Vietnamese fans. Bottles of glass were hurled at the heads of many Vietnamese supporters when all hell broke loose. This violent incident was hypothesized to be triggered by more than just the home team’s loss. When the Vietnamese fans tried to run away, a small stampede started, where many were stepped on.
Competitive sports dance close to the boundaries of aggression when it comes to both the players and the supporters. When riots break loose, it is most often the cause of unruly supporters that tend to disregard the safety and principles of the society.