1. ITV Report

Paul Mitchell pleads guilty to assaulting Aston Villa player Jack Grealish during derby with Birmingham City

  • Paul Mitchell has been jailed for 14 weeks for assaulting Aston Villa player Jack Grealish.
  • His solicitor told the court "He cannot explain what came over him"
  • He has also been ordered to pay £100 to Grealish in compensation.

27-year-old Paul Mitchell has been sentenced to 14 weeks in prison after he pleaded guilty to assaulting Aston Villa player Jack Grealish during their derby match against Birmingham City on Sunday.

He was also ordered to pay Grealish £100 for the pain, discomfort and shock caused by the assault.

Credit: West Midlands Police

Mitchell was also told to pay £115 victim surcharge and £135 in prosecution costs - and given a fortnight to pay the total sum.

Paul Mitchell Credit: BPM Media (Midlands)

Paul Mitchell, who was a season ticket holder from Rubery in Worcestershire, also admitted entering the pitch unlawfully.

Prosecutor Jonathan Purser told the court that Mr Grealish felt lasting pain after the incident but had suffered no substantial injury from a punch to the right side of his jaw.

In a statement read into the court record by Mr Purser, the Aston Villa captain said: "I cannot help but feel how lucky I was in this incident. It could have been so much worse had the supporter had some sort of weapon."

Paul Mitchell Credit: BPM Media (Midlands)

Birmingham City has confirmed Mitchell has been given a lifetime ban from St Andrew's.

His solicitor, Vaughn Whistance, told the court: "He cannot explain what came over him yesterday morning. His initial foolish intention was to just go onto the pitch and whip up the crowd."

Earlier, Mitchell's lawyer said his family had had to leave their home due to threats following his arrest after the incident.

Making an application for the court to withhold Mitchell's home address, Mr Whistance, told the court: "There have been various comments posted on different social media. My client's young family have had to leave their home address to move to outside of Birmingham through fear that they would suffer serious harm or even death."

Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish scored the winning goal in the second-half Credit: BPM Media (Midlands)

Birmingham City Football Club has welcomed today's sentencing in a statement:

What he did was unacceptable and has no place in football.

The Club can confirm that Mr Mitchell is banned from our home ground, the St. Andrew’s Trillion Trophy Stadium, for life. And nor will he have access to purchase tickets for away games involving Birmingham City Football Club, or have tickets purchased on his behalf.

The Club has also banned another supporter for life for a series of vile and malicious Tweets on social media, relating to Jack Grealish and his family.

The individual in question remains the subject of an ongoing investigation by West Midlands Police.

Birmingham City FC rejects all forms of anti-social behaviour. We will not tolerate the kind of incidents we have seen during and since Sunday’s derby fixture against Aston Villa Football Club.

Any further comment from the Club on other issues will be released in due course.

– Birmingham City statement
Security taking Paul Mitchell off the pitch Credit: BPM Media (Midlands)

Aston Villa also issued a statement saying the club was "appalled" by the incident:

Aston Villa Football Club is appalled by the disgraceful attack on Jack Grealish during today’s game.

A red line has been crossed by this cowardly on-field assault on a player, which is unprecedented in English football.

We trust the perpetrator will feel the full force of the law and the authorities investigate the circumstances surrounding today’s deplorable incident.

Local rivalries are part of the fabric of the game however, as we are sure our friends at Birmingham City would agree, to have a player’s personal safety placed under such jeopardy is a serious cause for concern for the entire football community.

– Aston Villa statement

Jack Grealish recorded a video for Aston Villa giving his reaction to the events on the pitch.