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Gardai and FAI investigating vicious attack at underage match

Attack: It's understood that gardai want to speak with a 21-year old man
Attack: It's understood that gardai want to speak with a 21-year old man

GARDAI are investigating allegations of a vicious assault at an under-age soccer match that saw a spectator punched and kicked in the head.

It is understood that an altercation took place between two juvenile players and two spectators at a match in south Co Dublin on Tuesday night.

Two under-17 football teams were playing in the second half when a "bad tackle" occurred, the Herald reports. 

It is understood it caused a player to be floored. A parent tried to intervene, only to be knocked over by the opposing player.

Another parent got involved, and was allegedly set on by a player who ran across the pitch, punched him and then kicked him in the head as he lay on the ground.

While the first parent was unharmed, the second is understood to have been taken to St Vincent's Hospital where he was treated for minor injuries.

A witness said the player who allegedly assaulted the parent had to be physically restrained by members of both teams.

Gardai were called to the scene at 8.15pm and a 17-year-old male was arrested. He was later released without charge.

It is understood that gardai want to speak with a 21-year old man.

One witness who spoke to the Herald said the assault was "the worst thing I have seen in this sport in nearly 15 years".

"One of the players ran over and punched one of the parents in the face and then proceeded to kick his head," the witness said.

"It was a shocking assault, especially in senior schoolboy football."

The referee sent off both players associated with the assault and called off the match.

The FAI confirmed it is carrying out an investigation through the Dublin and District Schoolboys League (DDSL) and that it was taking the matter "very seriously".