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Friday, February 8, 2008

Football Violence: This Time Against a Medical Staffer in Ghana

Video courtesy of YouTube.

We often read of football-related violence that occurs in the stands/terraces, between players, against referees, and out on the streets between rival hard-core factions.

But here is an another unfortunate incident. Against a medical staffer who was assisting an injured player from Cameroon (apparently the #4 Rigobert Song). Perhaps this was a novel first. I have never seen anything of this nature before.

Andre Bikey of Cameroon lost his head, and as you will see from the video, rigorously pushed a medical staffer to the ground. This event occurred near the end of the game, which was won by Cameroon, 0 x 1, against the hosts, Ghana, in a semi-final of the African Cup of Nations.

Samuel Ashia Speaks Out

This quote appeared in the Sunday Guardian/Observer on 10 February:
"It was very forceful, and I landed badly. It didn't hurt at the time but the next day my head ached and the area around my waist did, too. Lots of people, friends and strangers, have told me I should have retaliated, but I was there to do a job. I didn't talk to him at all. I stood up and as he started talking away I just looked at him. He's bigger than I am - and I'm there to do my job and not to fight.

If he wants to talk to me now, before the final, then I will listen. But I don't want to meet him again because he attacked me for no reason. I will just carry on doing my job and I don't expect it to happen again. Players should respect us - we are there to save lives."

Mr. Aisha will be on the pitch at the final.

Comments by Steve Coppell, Bikey's club side manger, at Reading FC in the Premiership
“I can only assume something happened that we couldn’t see,” Coppell told Sky Sports News.

“They (Cameroon) were in a great position in the game, the clock was ticking away, there was an almost dormant instant in the game, and then he’s run over there. He’s no fool. Something must have happened to spark him off that wasn’t visible on the TV. As soon as he comes back we will speak to him. It looked crazy on TV but he got really incensed about something, it wasn’t a spontaneous act.”

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