Football

Clubs face FA punishment

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West Ham and Millwall face the prospect of severe punishment by the Football Association after being charged with several offences - including racist behaviour by both sets of fans - following the shocking crowd violence in August.

The FA have issued four charges against West Ham and three against Millwall after an investigation into the serious disturbances in and around Upton Park on August 25.

A full range of sanctions are available including the clubs being made to play matches behind closed doors.

An FA statement said each club faces charges of: Failure to ensure their supporters refrained from violent, threatening, obscene and provocative behaviour; Failure to ensure their supporters refrained from racist behaviour; Failure to ensure their supporters did not throw missiles, harmful or dangerous objects onto the pitch.

West Ham have also been charged with failure to ensure their supporters did not enter the field of play - there were three pitch invasions during the Carling Cup second round tie.

West Ham striker Carlton Cole and Millwall's Jason Price both suffered racist abuse during the match, which the home side won 3-1.

During the evening, one 44-year-old man was taken to hospital with stab wounds and several others were injured.

The FA's statement added: "The FA has liaised closely with all relevant authorities including the Metropolitan Police during the course of its investigations and has been in constant dialogue with both clubs during this time.

"Both clubs now have a period of 14 days to respond to the charges."

After the match, sports minister Gerry Sutcliffe backed the FA's call for life bans for those fans found to have been involved and described the scenes as "a disgrace to football".

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

Topics:
Carlton Cole
Football
Millwall
Jason Price
Premier League
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