Paris FC / Lyon match interrupted: what to know about the incidents that occurred during the Coupe de France match

New game interruption for Olympique Lyonnais. Three weeks after the final stop of Lyon-Marseille in Ligue 1, it was the 32nd round of the Coupe de France meeting between Paris FC and OL at the Charléty stadium which was also definitively stopped on Friday 17 December, after umpteenth incidents in the stands. The two clubs had each scored a goal in the first half and were about to play the other half of the match when the referee decided to interrupt the game. Here’s what to know about incidents.

The two clubs tied at the break

Paris FC (Ligue 2 club) and OL faced each other in the round of 16 of the Coupe de France. The Rhone club made its entry into the competition, like other Ligue 1 clubs afterwards. The two teams neutralized each other at the break, after Gaëtan Laura opened the scoring in the 7th minute followed by Moussa Dembélé’s equalizer for the Lyonnais just before returning to the locker room.

Half-time incidents

At half-time, clashes broke out in the Lyon parking lot. Supporters threw smoke bombs and numerous brawls were started. People left the stand to keep away from the overflows, going to stand on the athletics track which borders the field, causing a large crowd movement. The police intervened while the announcer of Paris FC appealed for calm.

Second period delayed then definitive interruption

The two formations had returned to the lawn when an invasion of the ground took place. Dozens of people gathered on the lawn of the Charléty stadium. Escorted by the security services, the players returned to the locker rooms. The referee of the meeting, Jérémy Sinat, initially delayed the start of the second half. After about fifty minutes of waiting, he finally decided not to resume the meeting.

Fans invaded the lawn of the Charlety stadium at half-time for the meeting between Paris FC and Olympique Lyonnais in the 32nd final of the Coupe de France, on December 17, 2021. (BERTRAND GUAY / AFP)

Violence in stadiums at the heart of the debates

These incidents occurred two days after an inter-ministerial meeting on the creation of a new protocol for responding to violence in stadiums, in which professional football leaders took part. It had led to several reforms and avenues of reflection, in particular the definitive interruption of a Ligue 1 or Ligue 2 match in the event of injury to a player or a referee by a projectile throw. “A quick, enlightened and concerted decision “ within a maximum period of 30 minutes will also have to be taken concerning the stopping or the resumption of the match, it had also been decided, to face the repetitive incidents which shake French football.

The opposing reactions of the two presidents

For Jean-Michel Aulas, OL leader, suspended for five league games, responsibilities are shared. “It’s not all to blame our supporters”, he felt after the final interruption of the match, underlining his intention to file a complaint. A point of view that is not shared by the president of the PFC, Pierre Ferracci, who asks for his part “sanctions” against Lyon and holds the manager of the visiting club, Jean-Michel Aulas, responsible. He explained “expect something from the Minister of Sports, the Minister of the Interior, but also from the League and the Federation”.

Sanctions to come?

It is the disciplinary commission of the French Football Federation (FFF), the organizing body of the Coupe de France, which will have to rule on the fate of the match. OL find themselves again under the threat of sanctions, a few days after being scarred by a withdrawal point in Ligue 1, following the incident at Groupama Stadium during the match against OM. The Federation will have to make a decision quickly since the round of 16 of the competition must be held on January 2 and 3.

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