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Watch: Violence erupts between players and fans after match in Turkey

Violence broke out between supporters of Trabzonspor and players from Fenerbahce after a match on Sunday in the Turkish top flight, which has been plagued by trouble this season.

A crowd of home supporters invaded the pitch at Trabzonspor’s stadium after the final whistle of an encounter that Fenerbahce won 3-2.

Images show a Trabzonspor fan enter the pitch and begin running towards the celebrating Fenerbahce players, some of whom reacted by running towards him to try and strike him.

Other fans then invaded the pitch as stewards tried to restore order.

Videos showed Belgian international Michy Batshuayi kicking a fan who had entered the pitch and Nigerian international Bright Osayi-Samuel punching another supporter.

In other images on social media, a fan can be seen to threaten a visiting player with a corner flag and Fenerbahce’s goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic receives a punch to the face.

Following the violent scenes, Turkey’s interior minister Ali Yerlikaya announced the opening of an investigation into the incident.

“After the Trabzonspor-Fenerbahce football match played this evening, an investigation has been initiated immediately to identify the spectators who entered the pitch and to investigate the incidents that took place at the end of the match,” he wrote on X.

“Incidents of violence on football pitches are never acceptable.”

The Turkish Football Federation (TFF) called the events “unacceptable” and said in a statement that “the necessary criminal sanctions will be imposed on those responsible for these incidents”.

It is not the first time violence has been seen in the Turkish Super Lig this season.

The league was suspended for a week in December after a referee was attacked during a match between Ankaragucu and Rizespor.

Ankaragucu president Faruk Koca, alongside other men, attacked referee Halil Umut Meler on the pitch after the match, injuring the official.

A number of Fenerbahce trips to Trabzon in recent times have also been marred by violence.

A 2016 game against Trabzonspor was abandoned in the closing minutes after an assistant referee was attacked by a home supporter.

The year before that the Fenerbahce team bus came under attack from a gunman en route to the airport on the way back from the neighbouring Black Sea city of Rize, leaving the driver seriously injured.

In 2014 a match between Trabzonspor and Fenerbahce was called off at half-time after the Istanbul club’s players were pelted with objects thrown onto the pitch by home fans.

Trabzonspor, who won the Turkish title two years ago, also found themselves in the spotlight in 2015 when the club president locked the referee and his assistants inside the stadium overnight in protest at the decision not to award his team a penalty.

They were eventually released in the early hours of the following morning after a phone call from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

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