Two charged over Spurs fan attack

The Drunken Ship was the scene for the attack. Photo: PA

Two men have been charged with attempted murder after English football fans were attacked in Rome, police said.

Officers said two Roma fans - Francesco Ianari, 26, and Mauro Pinnelli, 25 - were charged after Tottenham Hotspur fan Ashley Mills suffered knife wounds to his head and leg during an ambush at the Drunken Ship pub in Campo de Fiori while he and fellow supporters enjoyed a drink in the Eternal City at 1am yesterday.

A police spokeswoman said: "They have been charged with attempted murder for involvement in riots and causing serious injury with a knife and are due to appear in court soon."

The match itself, which ended 0-0, also did not pass off without incident and the Football Association will pass on its own report to UEFA on the alleged anti-Semitic chanting at the Stadio Olimpico.

Shortly after revealing a 'Free Palestine' banner, a section of the home support began singing "Juden Tottenham" to the fans of the London club, who have a historical Jewish connection.

UEFA would not comment on the matter last night, saying it would only be able to look in to the issue if it was mentioned in the match delegate's report, which is due to arrive with European football's governing body today.

An FA spokesperson said: "We were saddened and alarmed to see reports of violent incidents prior to the game as well as anti-Semitic chants.

"The FA had a crowd control advisor present at the fixture who will provide an urgent report which we will pass on to UEFA as a matter of priority."

UEFA fined Lazio £32,500 for their fans monkey chanting at three Spurs players during the reverse fixture in September, and Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas hopes the organisation move swiftly to establish the facts.

"It will take another investigation,'' the Tottenham manager said.

"It happened last time and it was acted upon quickly by UEFA. We will have to wait and see if there is anything to act upon. If there is UEFA have to act."

News of the attack sparked outrage among the people of Rome and the 3,000 fans who had made the trip from Britain to the Italian capital to support their team.

One Spurs fan caught up in the attack recalled how the attackers beat a group of around 30 people with planks of wood and knuckle dusters after throwing gas canisters into the Drunken Ship pub.

"We heard smashing glass, shouting and then smoke. I thought there was a fire but we realised they'd thrown gas in to the pub - that's why they had scarves over their faces," said the Spurs fan, who did not want to be named.

"There were about 30 of them - they pushed through the pub and pinned us back into a corner.

"They grabbed anything they could and hit us with it.

"The attack lasted about 10 minutes but it felt like longer.

"I feared the worst. I have got two young kids and I was just thinking...

"I ended up with a couple of bruises but if I had been at the front then God knows what would have happened to me.

"It was like something out of a film."