Newcastle condemn fans after Wigan incident

Newcastle United have condemned supporters who disrupted amateur football matches prior to the club's 2-1 Premier League defeat at Wigan on Sunday.

Around 250-300 travelling fans disembarked coaches and spilled onto pitches near to the DW Stadium at around 2:15pm, where amateur side Wigan Cosmos were playing AFC Leigh Centurions in the South Lancashire Counties League.

Supporters then charged over to the adjacent pitch where Goose Green Reserves were facing Olympic AFC.

People allegedly ripped out corner flags, destroyed the goalmouths, and also took the match ball. The damage caused is estimated to be more than £200.

In a statement, Newcastle said:

Newcastle United are very disappointed with the behaviour of a minority of its fans who were involved in the vandalism of equipment belonging to Wigan Cosmos Football Club and pitch incursions during their game against AFC Leigh Centurions on 17 March which caused the match to be stopped.

Our travelling fans have a very good reputation, but the actions of a minority on this occasion were wholly unacceptable. Football, at all levels of the game, deserves the same degree of respect whether it is played in the Premier League or at the grassroots level. We were sorry to learn that this South Lancashire Counties Premier Division game was disrupted in this manner and we would urge anyone who witnessed this incident to contact Greater Manchester Police.

– Spokesperson, Newcastle United