A highly charged derby match has been abandoned after the goalkeeper was assaulted and left with a face injury during a first half pitch invasion.
The Australian A-League clash between Melbourne Victory and Melbourne City lasted only 22 minutes before Tom Glover was struck over the head with a metal bucket as fans invaded the pitch.
The City goalkeeper, a former Tottenham Hotspur youth player, was then struck with the bucket that was being used to tackle flares that had been thrown onto the pitch.
Glover subsequently suffered a cut to the face in the incident that took place on the 22nd minute of the encounter, with his team leading 1-0.
The league leaders were ahead through Aiden O’Neill’s 11th-minute goal when trouble erupted.
A flare thrown from the crowd appeared to hit a Network 10 cameraman, and the situation escalated when Glover picked another off the ground and threw it back into the stand housing Victory’s fans.
Supporters then stormed the pitch and the goalkeeper was struck and left bloodied before the match was brought to a halt.
Tt was officially abandoned soon after to “protect the integrity of the match.”
The club later tweeted that the 24-year-old goalkeeper “likely has a concussion.”
Both sets of fans had planned to walk out in protest after Australian Professional Leagues (APL) set forth its plan to play the A-League Grand Final in Sydney for the next three years.
As well as the incident involving Glover, referee Alex King also appeared to be affected in the incident after he was covered with powder in the occurrence.
In a statement, Football Australia said a “full investigation” would take place after the “shocking scenes” on Saturday.
The statement read: “Following shocking scenes during the first half of the A-League Men’s match between Melbourne Victory FC and Melbourne City FC at AAMI Park on Saturday 17 December, where fans from the Melbourne Victory FC end entered the field of play, Football Australia match officials have abandoned the match in accordance with Law 5.3 of the Laws of the Game in order to protect the integrity of the match.
“Such behaviour has no place in Australian Football, with a full Football Australia investigation to commence immediately, where strong sanctions will be handed down.”