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Leicester City fans clash with Spanish police ahead of Atletico Madrid tie

Leicester City fans have clashed with Spanish police ahead of the team's Champions League match against Atletico Madrid.

Videos posted on social media show football fans gathered in a litter-strewn square and officers in riot gear, wearing helmets and wielding batons.

A photograph on Twitter shows a man with a blood-stained face and a bandage wrapped around his head, while a video features a man with an English accent chanting "Gibraltar is ours".

At least three people were taken into custody after the brief confrontation at Madrid's Plaza Mayor, the Associated Press reported.

The trouble began when police tried to disperse some of the few hundred Leicester fans at the plaza, prompting a group to start throwing beer bottles at the officers.

Authorities said there were no reports of serious injuries, as fans at the plaza said some people were taken into ambulances for treatment.

Earlier, Spanish police said they detained eight Leicester fans for public disorder on Tuesday night after authorities said they disrespected officers and caused problems.

Spanish media said two officers and three fans sustained minor injuries in that incident.

Leicester fans outside the stadium described the clashes as "handbags", adding that tear gas was used, with one describing the police as "intimidating".

Another fan, who said there were "about five or six big bangs", added: "On the whole it was okay, but we did scarper out quite quickly earlier on when the police decided to throw rubber bullets at us."

Alcohol was to blame, according to one fan, who said: "It was just too much drink they've had."

Social media videos show a blue smoke bomb was let off while objects were thrown at police.

Emma Chetwynd from Tamworth alleged: "We did scarper out quite quickly when the police decided to throw rubber bullets at us. It was provoked but it did get a bit tasty so we left.

"There were five or six big bangs and everyone was saying it was rubber bullets but we left quite quickly.

"It started with a bit of trouble from our fans but they (police) didn't need an excuse to blast in. It's any excuse - it's hard to say - but any excuse and they'll come in.

"A few people we saw who haven't been causing trouble have tried to talk to them but they were rudely brushed away."

Earlier, Spanish police reportedly said eight Leicester fans were arrested for "causing a mess" on Tuesday night.

Clive Langley, who travelled with son Paul, was in the Plaza minutes before the incident on Wednesday and felt the tension was building, alleging that tear gas was used.

He said: "I could see what was about to happen so I said 'let's go and get something to eat'. Sure enough about 10 minutes later it was tear gas and 'whack, whack whack'. We didn't see rubber bullets but certainly tear gas."

However, another Leicester fan, Rak Singh from Oadby, felt any trouble was blown out of proportion.

He said: "They come in and clear out but nothing was happening.

"It wasn't as bad as people make it. If the police come and rush in you're going to run out and make it look bad. It was provoking the situation for no reason."

Belfast Telegraph Digital


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