Marseille to play behind closed doors while LFP investigate firework incident

Kevin Strootman and Jordan Amavi
Kevin Strootman and Jordan Amavi were the two Marseille players closest to the firework

Marseille will play their upcoming home fixtures behind closed doors while French football's governing body investigates the events of their league defeat by Lille on Saturday.

The match was held up for 31 minutes in the second half after a firework thrown by a fan exploded close to two players.

A statement from the Ligue de Football Professionnel (LFP) said it had taken the decision "as a safety measure".

Marseille's next home match is against Bordeaux on Tuesday, 5 February.

"Because of the nature and gravity of the facts, the committee has decided to investigate the case and during this process, as a safety measure, to play all games at the Orange Velodrome behind closed doors," the LFP statement said.

The LFP had previously ordered Marseille to close the north corner of the Orange Velodrome for the Lille and Bordeaux games "following the use of pyrotechnic devices and the use of laser".

Marseille's Kevin Strootman and Jordan Amavi escaped unhurt from the incident and the referee took both sets of players off the field.

The match had started with a 10-minute strike from home supporters in protest at the club's owners and coach.

The eventful Ligue 1 clash also saw nine yellow cards and one red - with former Newcastle midfielder Florian Thauvin sent off for the hosts for two bookable offences.

Lille won 2-1 with Pepe scoring both their goals and Mario Balotelli getting a consolation for Marseille on his debut.

Marseille have won only once since late November. In that time, they have been eliminated from three cup competitions and dropped to seventh in the league.

Top Stories