A FOOTBALL match had to be abandoned after a mass brawl broke out on the pitch which left one player being rushed to hospital with a seriously injured leg.
Chaos descended on Horden Colliery Welfare Football Club’s away fixture against Cleator Moor Celtic FC, leading to three of the home side’s players being sent off alongside their manager Dean White, while Horden also lost a player after claims of a punch-up.
One of the Cumbrian team’s players was taken to hospital in Whithaven by ambulance with a suspected broken leg after paramedics and a doctor were called to the ground.
It has since been confirmed he suffered suspected ligament damage, which means he will be out for up to four weeks.
Football Association officials for the Durham and Cumberland areas are considering whether a joint investigation into the circumstances needs to be launched.
The game was called off by the referee before 70 minutes into the game, leading to questions on whether the result stands. But Cleator Moor stating it does not want a replay as it is happy for Horden to move through the league cup competition with a 0-3 win from Saturday’s game.
But, its bosses plan to report the referee to the Football Association.
Chiefs at Horden said they did not wish to comment before they have read the referee’s report, which is expected in coming days, and once there is a “clearer picture” of what happened.
But chairman of Cleator Moor, Herbert Briggs, questioned the performance of the referee, and compared the alleged violence to a “hen party on a night out with handbags,” rather than a mass brawl.
He also said relations have always been good between the clubs.
John Topping, company secretary for Durham County Football Association (FA), said: “We have received the referee’s report and I am in contact with Cumberland County FA to see if we need to hold a joint inquiry.”
Officers from Cumbria Police were not called.