REPUBLIC OF IRELAND international Enda Stevens has said that the recent pitch invasion in English football would have 'you fearing for your life'
The Sheffield United defender admitted that something needs to be done about the latest fad that involved fans and players getting assaulted after games.
These included Crystal Palace's manager Patrick Viera, Sheffield United captain Billy Sharp, and Aston Villa's goalkeeper Robin Olsen.
Speaking about Sharp's attack, the 31-year-old described the attack on his captain as shocking
Sharp was headbutted by a charging fan after Nottingham Forest knocked out United on penalties last month
The incident was caught on TV and sparked outrage.
Forest fan headbutts Sheffield United’s billy sharp pic.twitter.com/vQ98GP4YNu
— Football Fights (@footbalIfights) May 17, 2022
‘Over the course of that week or so, it was happening continuously. I was out there with him (Sharp) and it was just an absolute disgrace, said the Ireland defender in a FAI press conference on Tuesday.
‘The thing is with that, you're actually fearing for your life. You're on a pitch and thinking: “I can be attacked at any moment here”.
‘There was no help for us, nobody there to protect us, there were policemen beside us who didn't help us and didn't want to get involved.
‘They saw it happen first hand and did nothing and then a few of our lads ended up trying to protect Billy when the second fella came up into his face.
‘Now it seems the police are coming after them and questioning them for what they have done, but all we could do was protect ourselves and help each other out.’
The left-back added that players need more protection when it comes to games: ‘It comes down to protecting us', he added.
We are the one's isolated out there, and we had no protection at all.
‘There were people in place to protect us but they chose not to. They could see it first hand and they didn't help us.
‘It was up to ourselves to help each other out and try to get ourselves off the pitch, whereas they could probably do better in terms of policing it more, more stewards.
‘It is a difficult one for the stewards, I do understand that, but it is something that has to change.
‘Obviously they (fans) have been away from the game for two years with coronavirus.
‘Emotions were high, it was an emotional game and it's all well (and good) if you want to run onto the pitch and celebrate, but the attacking of opposition players is an absolute disgrace.
‘Especially that there are 11 lads or a squad of 20 lads and there are 20,000 people on a pitch running at you from left, right and center.
‘You don't know what is going to happen. It could come from anywhere.’
🗣 “You’re actually fearing for your life. You’re on a pitch and you’re thinking. ‘I can be attacked in any moment here’. There was no help for us.”
Sheffield United full-back Enda Stevens says the pitch invasions in England need to be dealt with due to the dangers involved. pic.twitter.com/5q4q6r2Hqs
— Football Daily (@footballdaily) June 1, 2022