A groups of Leeds United fans dragged a teenage Derby County fan off a train and attacked him, a court has heard.
Derby Crown Court heard how the Leeds fans were travelling back from watching an away game at Stoke City when they met a set of Rams fans on platform three at Midland railway station.
The group became “incensed” when a 19-year-old Derby supporter chanted “where were you at Wembley” in reference to the play-off semi-finals Leeds had lost to them three months earlier, reports Derbyshire Live.
One of the Leeds fans got off the train and pulled the teen from it kicking and stamping on him while he lay curled up in a ball on the ground.
Three of them – Ian Greener, Dean Wilson and Kevin Widdop – two of whom have had football banning orders before, were sentenced after each pleading guilty to affray.
Judge Jonathan Bennett told the trio: “You may have been provoked by the other group but, unfortunately, you got involved in varying degrees in violence.
“It is a very serious incident in my view, it was fairly sustained and at least two people got injured.
“Football violence is often people like you, in employment, who for some reason appear to get a thrill or adrenaline rush from fighting other supporters.”
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Amrisha Parathalingam, prosecuting, said the incident took place on the evening of August 24, 2019.
On that day Leeds had beaten Stoke 3-0 in the Potteries and their supporters got off a train at Derby to change for one back to Yorkshire.
The same day the Rams drew 1-1 at Pride Park against West Bromwich Albion.
Miss Parathalingam said: “There was chanting between the two sets of supporters and the teenager started singing ‘where were you at Wembley?’ which angered the Leeds group.
“One of them got on the Derby train and punched one man before the teenager was dragged off the train.
“He later recalled being curled up on the floor being kicked and stamped on by the group.
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“One member of the public was overheard saying ‘look at what they are doing, he’s only a kid’ while a family with a young child were coming down the stairs to the platform and when they saw what was happening went back up the stairs.
“The young child there was described as being upset.”
All three men were identified from CCTV, questioned and admitted their part on the violence.
Greener, 47, of Whitehall Street, Wakefield was jailed for 29 weeks, suspended for 18 months and was ordered to carry our 120 hours unpaid work.
He was also fined £300 and ordered to pay £420 costs.
Holly Clegg, mitigating, said her client works for Network Rail, lives with his girlfriend and has sons aged 17 and 22.
She said: “Alcohol was the catalyst for this and he says he is rarely interested in going to football matches now.”
Judge Bennett said: “Despite Leeds getting promotion (to the Premier League)?”
Miss Clegg replied: “Those are his instructions.”
Widdop, 56, of Pasture Drive, Castleford, was jailed for 33 weeks, suspended for 18 months and was handed a weekend curfew.
He was also fined £500 and ordered to pay £1,200 costs.
Penny Clancy, his barrister, said her client works at a Volvo warehouse in Normanton, near Wakefield, but is currently on sick leave with a shoulder problem.
She said: “He is extremely remorseful and regretful, lives with his wife of 31 years and his daughters aged 27 and 21.”
And Wilson, 37, of Berryfield Garth, Osset, Wakefield, was jailed for 33 weeks, suspended for 18 months and was ordered to carry out 120 hours unpaid work.
He too was fined £500 and was ordered to pay £1,200 costs.
Ben Thomas, mitigating, said his client works as a self-employed electrician and has two daughters from a previous relationship.
He said: “He recognises he was stupid to get involved in this.”
All three men were handed three-year football banning orders restricting where they can go and how far away from grounds where Leeds United and England are playing football matches on that day.
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