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West Ham's difficult start at London Stadium

Published 27/10/2016

Police made seven arrests following crowd disturbances at West Ham's EFL Cup match against Chelsea at the London Stadium
Police made seven arrests following crowd disturbances at West Ham's EFL Cup match against Chelsea at the London Stadium

Violence marred West Ham's EFL Cup derby win over Chelsea at the London Stadium on Wednesday night, with seven arrests made by the Metropolitan Police.

Here, Press Association Sport takes a look at the difficult start for the Hammers at their new home in the converted Olympic Stadium.

AUGUST 4, 2016

West Ham's first competitive match at the London Stadium comes earlier than expected with the second leg of a Europa League qualifier against NK Domzale. The Irons win 3-0 against the Slovenians, with Cheikhou Kouyate scoring the first goal at the club's new home. However, there are some issues for home supporters who were unable to find their allocated seats and also over restricted views.

AUGUST 7

A glamour friendly against Italian champions Juventus marks the official opening of the London Stadium. West Ham lose 3-2 after a late goal from substitute Simone Zaza, who would join the London club before the end of the transfer window. Again there were problems with seating in some sections.

AUGUST 21

West Ham win their first Premier League game at the ground 1-0 against Bournemouth. However, an "error in administration" saw 56 season ticket holders left without seats at the back of the West Stand with several opting to watch the match while sitting on the bare concrete steps.

AUGUST 25

Slaven Bilic's side suffer a 1-0 home loss against Romanian side Astra Giurgiu to crash out of the Europa League qualifiers. Footage emerges on social media of West Ham fans fighting amongst themselves in the stands. The Met Police confirms a man was taken out of the stadium and arrested on suspicion of ABH (actual bodily harm).

SEPTEMBER 10

West Ham are beaten 4-2 by Watford in the Premier League, having been 2-0 up after 33 minutes. The match is overshadowed by crowd disturbances within the stadium as rival supporters clashed despite the efforts of stewards to retain the segregation. Some 10 fans were ejected from the stadium, and the club warn they could hand out life bans to any supporters found to have been involved in crowd trouble.

SEPTEMBER 13

Metropolitan Police say a dditional policing measures cannot yet be implemented inside London Stadium because of the lack of the Airwave radio system, which is used by the emergency services, at the £700m venue.

SEPTEMBER 21

Having been beaten 4-2 at West Brom in their next league game, the Irons secured a 1-0 win over League Two side Accrington in the EFL Cup with a stoppage-time free-kick from Dimitri Payet to lift the mood at the London Stadium.

SEPTEMBER 25

West Ham lose 3-0 at home to Southampton, leaving the Irons in the relegation zone after just one victory in their opening six Premier League matches.

OCTOBER 1

Bilic's side labour to a 1-1 draw against newly-promoted Middlesbrough. The match is again overshadowed by crowd disturbances. Four people were arrested over the disorder.

OCTOBER 22

A last-minute goal from Winston Reid gives West Ham a 1-0 win over bottom club Sunderland.

OCTOBER 26

West Ham secure a memorable 2-1 EFL Cup win over London rivals Chelsea to secure a place in the quarter-finals. There had been efforts from all stakeholders to increase security and safety measures beforehand, which included alcohol restrictions, body searches on turnstiles and post-match segregation, as well as 30 people being dispersed by police prior to kick-off under Antisocial behaviour legislation.

However, skirmishes broke out towards the end of the game as police and stewards battled to maintain segregation behind the goal being defended by West Ham. Coins, seats and other objects appeared to be thrown between rival supporters. Seven arrests were made. Both the Hammers and Chelsea were quick to condemn the unsavoury scenes, which are now under investigation by the Football Association.

Press Association

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