Fans to remain in custody over Rome stabbing

Bar staff said Spurs fans tried to take refuge from the assault, as the BBC's Matthew Morris reports

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An investigating magistrate has ordered that two men charged over an attack on English football supporters in Rome should remain in custody.

Ten Spurs fans, in the city for a match with rival Rome club Lazio, were taken to hospital after Thursday's attack.

Roma fans Francesco Ianari and Mauro Pinnelli were ordered to remain in custody, according to Italian news agency Ansa.

Essex builder Ashley Mills sustained stab wounds to his leg and head.

He was taken to San Camillo Hospital and has been under observation after having surgery on Friday, but is not in a life-threatening condition.

The two suspects were visited in prison on Sunday by an investigating magistrate.

Initial reports suggested the incident may have been an anti-Semitic attack, as Tottenham has traditionally had strong ties with London's Jewish community.

But in ordering the pair to remain in custody, the judge ruled there was no racist motive in the alleged attack and that it was football related. The pair exercised their right of silence and did not respond to the judge.

Mr Mills and his fellow fans were enjoying a drink ahead of the club's Europa League tie against Lazio when opposition fans stormed the pub.

TROUBLE IN ROME

  • 1984: Liverpool fans stabbed by Roma supporters after European Cup Final
  • 2001: Liverpool supporters stabbed in buttocks
  • 2006: Middlesbrough fans attacked, again involving buttock slashing
  • 2007: Manchester United fans face similar attacks on two separate occasions
  • 2009: Man Utd fans attacked again by locals
  • Nov 2012: Italian fans attack Spurs supporters

On Friday night the president of the Italian Football Association (FIGC) sent a letter of apology to English FA chairman David Bernstein.

"I beg you to send our apologies to all Tottenham's fans - and in particular to those families directly involved.

"I will personally follow the investigation's development and remain at your disposal should my assistance in any further matters be required."

Mr Mills, 25, from Brentwood, Essex, gave an interview to the Evening Standard newspaper in which he talked about the moment the bar was stormed by a mob of about 40 masked men.

"They came out of nowhere. I didn't see the guy who stabbed me. There were too many of them," he said.

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