Legia Warsaw fans are ejected from the home stand by stewards during the Europa Conference League Group E football match between Aston Villa and Legia Warsaw at Villa Park, Birmingham, England, Thursday, Nov. 30, 2023. Photo: AP
Villa's 2-1 victory was marred by ugly scenes that left four police officers injured after clashes with Legia hooligans.
Flares and missiles were thrown at police as Legia supporters were held in a coach park near Villa Park, with 46 arrests made in a bid to restore order.
Although the game started on time and no Legia fans were allowed in, a breakaway group managed to get near the stadium to throw bottles towards Villa fans inside the stands from the street outside.
Villa had reduced Legia's ticket allocation over fears of crowd trouble and they accused the Polish club of a "complete lack of cooperation" with themselves, the police and UEFA.
"Aston Villa can confirm it has lodged an official complaint with UEFA over the conduct of Legia Warsaw Football Club and the behaviour of their supporters prior to last night's UEFA Europa Conference League match at Villa Park," the Premier League club said in a statement on Friday.
"Four police officers were injured and 46 Legia supporters arrested after unprecedented violence by the Polish fans outside the stadium.
"This shocking behaviour followed Legia club officials' complete lack of cooperation with West Midlands Police, Aston Villa and UEFA throughout the day.
"Legia Warsaw refused to confirm if they would accept their allocation of tickets for the match at that point. This is in stark contrast to normal UEFA operational procedures."
Chris Heck, president of business operations at Villa, said: "The lack of cooperation and prevarication from Legia Warsaw officials prior to the match was entirely unacceptable and deeply disappointing.
"This behaviour increased the danger that West Midlands Police officers and our own fans were subjected to before the game and the scenes of disorder from the Legia fans have no place in modern football or civilised society.
"Aston Villa will be making further representations to UEFA in order to ensure that other clubs and police forces across Europe are not exposed to similar serious safety risks at the hands of Legia Warsaw."
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