West Ham are investigating after two German commentators claim to have been attacked during the Europa League semi-final first leg between the London club and Eintracht Frankfurt.
Tim Brockmeier and Philipp Hofmeister were reporting for ARD Radio at the London Stadium when they allege to have had their headphones thrown to the ground, before receiving punches to the back of the head.
German newspaper Bild say the unsavoury scenes began following Michail Antonio’s first half equaliser for West Ham - before Frankfurt went on to win the first leg 2-1.
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Speaking during commentary, after the broadcast had been briefly disrupted, Hofmeister said, “We’re being attacked here. They threw the headset down on my colleague Tim”.
Shocked by the incident, he went on to say, “I have to sort myself out a bit. We have to see that we can get some security personnel here”.
With reports of the pair receiving punches to the head, neck and back, security intervened to protect the broadcasters until half time, when they say they were “transferred to the main press gallery by two very helpful West Ham employees so that we could safely finish our commentary”.
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Shaken by the incident, Hofmeister said, “If you constantly have the feeling that something could come from behind, a punch or something. My dreams of English football have been shattered”.
Following the match, Hofmeister tweeted to say they were both fine after a difficult evening.
West Ham say they will be “working to identify the offender” and “anyone identified will have their details passed to the police”.
“They will be given an indefinite ban and be unable to enter London Stadium and travel with the club. There is not place for this kind of behaviour”, the club said in a statement.
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