Fireworks set off on pitch at Irish Premier League game as referee stops match | Football | Sport

An Ireland Premier League game between Waterford and Shamrock Rovers has been stopped by the referee after supporters set off fireworks on the pitch. The hosts took the lead after 12 minutes through a goal from John Martin. 

But there were disgraceful scenes just moments later as some supporters invaded the pitch and set off fireworks, presumably to mark bonfire night.

The referee led the players off shortly afterwards, and there was a break in play while order was restored.

The match resumed again eight minutes later, but it was a bizarre and dangerous incident which could have caused serious injury.

Waterford FC’s official Twitter account posted: “PLAY STOPPED. Players being taken off the pitch by referee Rob Hennessy – visiting supporters setting off fireworks on the pitch.”

And videos on social media later showed at least three explosives being set off on the pitch as the players watched on in astonishment.

A number of Twitter users had their say, with one writing: “Lifetime bans for those responsible, nothing less. Imagine going through all the effort of buying fireworks, going to Waterford and firing them at players. Genuinely can’t understand such behaviour.”

Another added: “The worst thing about this is that Waterford will be fined for not preventing them getting into the ground.”

And another said: “Abandon the game and award Waterford the points.”

Fortunately there were no further incidents before half-time, and it appears as though the disruption is over for the night.

Shamrock sit top of the table, and are 12 points clear of their nearest challengers St Patrick’s Athletic.

Waterford, meanwhile, are down in eighth position. 

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