More Thuggery On An Irish Sports Field
When is it all going to end?
Yet another case of weekend violence.
Gardaí are investigating an assault on referee Daniel Sweeney in the Midlands which left him in hospital with a fractured jaw and broken nose.
The attack occurred at a soccer match in the village of Horseleap on the Westmeath-Offaly county boundary.
One of our Referees in Midland Branch today after a game was viciously attacked by players this should not be tollarted at all we as Referees doing a job no REF no game pic.twitter.com/YgPpAhSNpD— Joe Cassidy Athlone (@JoeCassidyIRE) November 11, 2018
It's understood a dispute occured towards the end of a game in the Combined Counties Football League between Horseleap and Mullingar Town involving up to three players and a spectator at the Horseleap pitch.
It's believed the assault occurred in the car park when the referee had left the field.
With the matter now in the hands of the Gardai, an initial report on the matter is expected to be given at the league's weekly committee meeting in Tullamore.
Mr. Sweeney was rushed to Mullingar hospital in the aftermath of the despicable incident.
This comes less than a week after the Dublin and District Schoolboys League warned it feared violence could lead to a fatality at a match.
The DDSL revealed that seven of their games had to be abandoned over a six week period following mass brawls.
Are we getting to a stage where a match can not take place unless Gardai are present?
Given the increasing levels of violence at games, it seems a road all sports are going down.
It's a sad state of affairs when lives are in jeopardy, due to law and order breaking down at a sports fixture.
At worst a fatality is looming, aside from that rising insurance, medical and law enforcement costs likely over safety fears mean some clubs may not even be able to hold their fixtures.