“Give him a ticket to Prague.” A star West Ham fan, he protected footballers’ families

A West Ham fan called Knollsy has become an unexpected darling of the English media. He gained attention by standing up to a group of Alkmaar supporters who attacked family members of the London club’s football players right in the stadium after Thursday’s second leg of the European Conference League semi-final.

After the final whistle, which sealed the 1-0 win, West Ham footballers began to rejoice on the Alkmaar pitch for the dream promotion to the final of the European Conference League.

They didn’t wait long. The snoring was replaced by fear for loved ones. They were attacked by a group of home supporters and several Hammers players, including captain Declan Rice or midfielder Jarrod Bowen, immediately ran to the sector where a fight broke out.

“The players got involved because it was a stand with families. But our supporters didn’t do anything,” West Ham coach David Moyes, whose father was among the fans, lamented.

Mela was stopped by the police, but videos began to circulate on social networks, which made a media star out of a fan called Knollsy. He stood up to a horde of Alkmaar supporters and prevented them from reaching the players’ relatives with his own body and fists.

“We were attacked by AZ fans. Knollsy has an artificial hip so he can’t run. But most of all he’s a decent guy and he was worried about close players and former West Ham players who were sitting around us,” The Sun newspaper quoted Freddie Bonfanti as saying.

“We were sitting behind Thilo Kehrer’s girlfriend (West Ham defender). Knollsy was worried about her so he went to the top of the stairs and confronted the Alkmaar fans. He did what he felt was right and stopped those fans,” Bonfanti recounted. “I’m proud to be his friend and that he made sure it didn’t turn into a worse incident,” he added.

Alkmaar coach Pascal Jansen and the players condemned the behavior of the home fans. “I’m ashamed, this doesn’t belong in stadiums. Even if you lose, you have to control yourself,” said the coach, whose family and other Dutch supporters were the target of a similar attack during the opening semi-final in London.

“It’s sad. I had a girlfriend and family there and they told me they were knocking with fear,” added defender Pantelis Chatzidiakos. “These weren’t even fans. If they want to do this, they better stay at home,” he added.

Knollsy’s story and photos of him with a torn T-shirt and scars on his face were reported by the English media. “Give him a ticket to the final,” urged Bonfanti in a post on Twitter, and the fans in the discussions overwhelmingly agree that the club should really give Knollsy the match in Prague.

The Hammers with Czech footballers Tomáš Souček and Vladimír Coufal will fight for the trophy on June 7 against Fiorentina in Prague’s Eden. And Knollsy will probably be there.

2023-05-20 06:08:50
#Give #ticket #Prague #star #West #Ham #fan #protected #footballers #families


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *