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McBurnie charged with assault after 'stamping on pitch invading fan'

The Sheffield United player has been summonsed to court, along with team mate Rhian Brewster.

Scotland player Oli McBurnie facing assault charges after ‘stamping on rival fan’ amid pitch invasion SNS Group
McBurnie: Scotland star facing assault charge.

Scotland striker Oliver McBurnie has been charged with assault in connection with a disturbance on the pitch after his club’s play-off semi-final defeat last month.

The Sheffield United player has been summonsed to court, along with team mate Rhian Brewster, following a police investigation into the match on May 7.

McBurnie watched from the stands as the Blades lost 3-2 to Nottingham Forest in a penalty shootout at the city ground in their unsuccessful quest to reach the English Premier League.

After their victory Forest fans invaded the pitch, during which Sheffield United captain Billy Sharp was assaulted, and a man was later charged, convicted and jailed for 24 weeks.

The 26-year-old former Swansea City striker is facing charges after allegedly stamped on a Forest fan during the disturbance.

The club said it was “disappointed” to learn that McBurnie and Brewster had been summonsed to court, following the conclusion of an inquiry by Nottinghamshire Police.

In a statement the force said both men were set to appear at magistrates’ court next month, where they will each face a charge of common assault.

Nottinghamshire Police said: “Two men have been informed that summonses have been issued following an incident at the end of a football match between Nottingham Forest and Sheffield United.”

The force said the allegations were “in relation to disorder at the conclusion of a game at the City Ground”.

The Yorkshire club, in a statement posted on its website, said: “Sheffield United Football Club is disappointed to learn that Rhian Brewster and Oli McBurnie have been charged following the incidents that took place at the EFL Championship play-off semi-final second leg against Nottingham Forest last month.

“Both players voluntarily engaged in interviews with Nottinghamshire Police in the aftermath of the fixture which saw their team-mate, Billy Sharp, the victim of assault in the chaos which followed the final whistle.

“Brewster and McBurnie strenuously deny the charges brought against them and football manager Paul Heckingbottom, who wrote letters to the League Managers’ Association, the Professional Footballers’ Association, the EFL and FA following a number of pitch invasions last month – including one involving Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira – is continuing discussions with key stakeholders in a bid to better protect players and staff in their place of work.”

Leeds born centre forward McBurnie has played 16 times for Scotland since his first cap in 2018, but the 26-year-old, who has also played for Swansea City and Bradford City, has yet to score for the national side.

He helped Steve Clarke’s men qualify for Euro 2020, by taking one of the decisive penalties in the shoot-out against Serbia, but missed the final tournament through injury and has been unable to earn his place back since.

Brewster, 22, of Wilmslow in Cheshire, and McBurnie of Knaresborough, North Yorkshire, will appear at Nottingham Magistrates’ Court on July 28.