Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers has blamed “a complete lack of respect” in society after a spectator appeared to attack Nottingham Forest players during Sunday’s FA Cup fourth round clash between the sides.
A man was tackled to the ground by stewards and later arrested after emerging from the outside section of the City Ground as Forest celebrated their third goal in a 4-1 win over the holders.
Speaking after the final whistle, Rodgers lamented a series of unsavory incidents at matches in recent weeks, including objects being thrown at players, and said: “It’s society. The rules of society have changed. It’s a total lack of respect.
It’s not just in football, it’s in life.
“It’s not just in football, it’s in life. I talk to a lot of business people and military people from all walks of society. It’s disrespect and people who feel empowered to do things.
“Society rules need to change and we see that lack of respect today. We have seen it over the past two years. Supporters entering the stadiums, what is it?
“You come, you support your team and win, lose or draw, you have respect. It is lacking in society and it spills over into other aspects of life.
The incident happened as Joe Worrall celebrated with his team-mates after his 32nd-minute goal put Forest ahead 3-0.
Rodgers said: “It’s behavior you never want to see. Whatever happens on the pitch, it must be a safe environment for the players, and we must always maintain respect in football.
“Unfortunately the guy walked onto the pitch and was clearly, clearly disappointed with what he was looking at.”
Leicester were quick to apologize to Forest for the incident and said in a statement the fan faced a lifetime ban.
It read: “The club is appalled at such behavior and apologizes to Nottingham Forest and its players whose safety has been compromised.
“We applaud the swift action taken by the City Ground stewards to apprehend the person involved, who will be subject to a lifetime ban from all Leicester City home and away matches.
“We will offer our full support to the competent authorities in pursuing the appropriate actions.”
Forest boss Steve Cooper admitted he did not see what happened and backed the authorities to deal with it.
Cooper said: ‘We have to trust the authorities to do the right thing. I didn’t tell the players about it. It wasn’t really mentioned.
However, Forest midfielder Philip Zinckernagel described what happened in a post-match interview.
He told beIN Sports: “It’s terrible. We thought it was one of our fans who came to celebrate with us, so even though we’re not supposed to, we kind of caught him and wanted to share our joy with him.
“Suddenly he started knocking and it was a bit shocking. Let’s hope this guy doesn’t see a football game for a long time.
Nottinghamshire Police have confirmed that a man has been arrested.
Chief Inspector Neil Williams said: “We have arrested a man in connection with an incident which happened during the first half of the Nottingham Forest and Leicester City FA Cup match today.
“Investigations are in the very early stages and our inquiries into the circumstances surrounding the incident are ongoing.”
Pundit and former Leicester and England player Gary Lineker was among those quick to condemn the incident.
Lineker tweeted: “Whoever was this so called fan who ran around the field throwing punches at @NFFC players should be banned for life by @LCFC. An embarrassment and a shame.
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