15 January 2023

Aaron Ramsdale admits post-match clash left ‘sour taste’ after derby victory

15 January 2023

Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale said a post-match incident with a Tottenham fan left a “sour taste” after his side’s north London derby win.

A spectator jumped over the advertising hoardings from behind the goal as the players clashed at full-time. The fan was quickly restrained by stewards but not before apparently aiming a kick at the England international.

Ramsdale told Sky Sports: “The Spurs fans were giving me some throughout the second half, I gave them some back, which to the few people I did do it to, was probably well-greeted, sportsmanship-like.

“Then a fan tried to jump over and give me a little punch on the back. That’s what happened and it’s a shame because it’s just a game of football at the end of the day.

“I think both sets of players tried to bring me away. Thankfully nothing actually happened too drastic. It’s a sour taste, but I’m sure we’ll enjoy it when we go back in the dressing room.”

Tottenham boss Antonio Conte said he had not seen the incident but having had it described to him, he said: “If it happened, this type of situation, it’s not good.

“To be able to show always respect is better, in any moment, for the opponent, for the players. If it happened, I didn’t like it.”

Tottenham defender Eric Dier, who served a four-match suspension in 2020 for marching into the crowd to confront an abusive spectator after an FA Cup loss to Norwich, described the Ramsdale incident as “unacceptable”.

He told Sky Sports: “I didn’t see it, but obviously it’s just unacceptable really. There’s nothing more I can say other than it’s unacceptable and it shouldn’t have happened.”

A statement on the Professional Footballers’ Association’s Twitter account after the incident read: “Violence towards players is completely unacceptable. These types of incidents are happening far too often.

“Players have a right to be safe in their place of work. When a player is attacked we expect the laws and regulations that are in place to protect them to be properly enforced.

“As the players’ union we treat this as a priority issue. We will be continuing to work with the authorities to demand that players and staff are better protected in their place of work.”

Ex-Spurs midfielder Jamie Redknapp, working as a Sky Sports pundit, said: “It’s completely unacceptable from the Spurs fan.

“This is part of football, you’re always going to get a little bit of stick. But for a fan to come and do that, come and try to kick a player that’s played on the pitch, it’s completely unacceptable.

“I’m sure Spurs will act accordingly. He should not be allowed in a football stadium, that guy. It’s completely out of order.”

Former Arsenal and England striker Lianne Sanderson tweeted: “That idiot that kicked or tried to kick @AaronRamsdale98 should be banned for life. Hate seeing things like that. What on earth is wrong with people.”

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