QPR trawl CCTV for coin-throwing spectator
QPR yesterday appealed to fans to help them identify the spectator who threw a coin at the assistant referee Stuart Burt during their Premier League win over Arsenal last Saturday.
Burt was struck on the back of the neck by a missile which appeared to come from Loftus Road's Ellerslie Road Stand after he awarded an injury-time free-kick to the Gunners in Saturday's match at Loftus Road.
The Football Association is understood to be aware of the incident and to be supporting efforts by QPR and the police to identify and punish the perpetrator, who could face a lifetime ban from the stadium. Rangers will trawl CCTV footage and interview stewards but have also urged any eyewitnesses to come forward.
QPR said: "The club is aware of a coin-throwing incident that took place in the latter stages of Saturday's home fixture against Arsenal at Loftus Road. The club appeals to any fans who saw the coin-throwing incident to come forward and assist our enquiries."
The referee Mike Dean, who is reported to have included the incident in his match report, halted Saturday's game for two minutes and brought his assistant in from the touchline as supporters began pointing to where the coin had come from. Several missiles were reportedly thrown at Burt but the Metropolitan Police said yesterday that they had yet to receive a complaint.
In February 2009, an Aston Villa fan who threw a 50p piece at a referee's assistant was given a five-year football banning order and was fined £2,300.
QPR added: "The club are reviewing CCTV in an effort to identify those people responsible and will take the appropriate action once this process has been completed. QPR supporters are reminded that this is a very serious offence and anyone caught throwing an object on to the pitch – towards officials or players –will be issued with an immediate lifetime ban from Loftus Road."
The club's chief executive, Philip Beard, said: "Such behaviour is simply not acceptable at Loftus Road, or anywhere else for that matter. As a club, we will do everything possible to prevent such incidents happening again."