A disturbing incident marred the atmosphere during an Indian Super League match between Kerala Blasters and Chennaiyin FC on Wednesday when tensions escalated between football fans and a stadium official.
A video capturing the intense confrontation between a bouncer at Kochi's Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium and Chennaiyin fans has gone viral on social media, surfacing a day after the match concluded in a 3-3 draw.
Ugly scenes witnessed at JLN stadium
The situation reached a point where police intervention became necessary, resulting in the removal of the bouncer from the scene.
The fans involved were asked to relocate from their assigned area as Kerala Blasters supporters at the back of the stand were unable to enjoy an unobstructed view of the match.
Fan posts video of incident
One of the fans involved in the incident expressed gratitude towards the timely intervention of the police and officials, stating, "Had the police and a few officials not interfered on time, this bouncer would've hit us for refusing to sit in the away stand cause we were blocking the view for the home fans sitting in the away stand. Why were home fans seated there in the first place? @KeralaBlasters," accompanied by a video.
FC Goa issues warning after this incident
This incident sheds light on a significant issue within Indian football. The lack of clear demarcation between home and away stands in most Indian Super League matches often leads to clashes between opposing supporters. A similar situation occurred in the previous season's ISL in Kochi, where FC Goa fans faced physical harm from a clash with home supporters.
Drawing lessons from such incidents, FC Goa has proactively taken measures to prevent a recurrence ahead of their upcoming home game against Kerala Blasters. In a post on social media (formerly Twitter), the ISL club urged traveling fans of Kerala Blasters to exclusively purchase tickets for the designated away stand. This strategic move aims to mitigate the potential for confrontations between rival fan groups during highly charged games.