As soon as AS Saint-Etienne’s descent was recorded, Geoffroy-Guichard Stadium fell into chaos. A story after the game that we will sadly remember.
What was so scary eventually happened. Sunday night, the result of the Ligue 1-Ligue 2 play-off, which AJ Auxerre won on penalties (1: 1 in the outer and retaliatory sections), literally set Geoffroy Guichard’s stadium on fire and offered images as sad as rebellious. While Saint-Etienne supporters expressed their distrust of their players throughout the season, they let their anger erupt as soon as their club’s decline was noted.
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Geoffroy Guichard did fall into chaos in a matter of seconds. Hundreds of fans, some of them in hoods, stepped onto the lawn and headed straight for the locker room entrance, despite a cordon of stewards at the bottom of the Henri-Point side stand, after a winning goal from Captain Auxerre Birama Touré. While all the players were still on the lawn, the CRS, who had come to stand at the entrance to the locker rooms, suffered a rain of smokestacks and fireworks. According to L’Équipe, the two of them avoided taking a metal barrier on their helmets, but all attempts to penetrate the corridor leading to the locker room were stopped by batons and tear gas.
Toddler Zaydou Youssoufa with breathing failure
Images of the crowd mingling among the players raised concerns about the worst, but the first report from Loire prefecture reports “only” two minor injuries in the ranks of Auxerre, to which are added 14 minor injuries between the forces of the order and 17 among supporters. As revealed by L’Équipe, Zaydou Youssouf’s small child, installed on a side stand, also found himself breathing due to tear gas. According to the sports newspaper, members of a private company specializing in close protection, placed four at each corner, were responsible for filtering out all players at the meeting.
Furlan: “I got scared after the match. (…) I was just crying. We all went home fast, we were afraid that one or two were missing from the locker room, so we counted them all.”
Players, staff and referees returned to the locker rooms in thick white smoke. No, without being afraid. “I was scared after the match, I admitted Jean-Marc Furlan, AJA coach, at a press conference. I took it and I don’t know how many bombs Itear gas, like my players. I was just crying. We all got home quickly, we were afraid that one or two would be missing in the locker room, so we counted them all. “
Damaged player cars
Tensions did not subside after the two teams returned to the locker rooms, nor was a press release from Bernard Caïazz and Roland Romeyer indicating that they were going to step down from the presidency and sell the club, reassuring supporters of the Greens. The team reports that it managed to enter the players’ car park, which is located in the Cauldron corral. While some cars were damaged, the ultras from Saint-Etienne eventually repulsed a squadron of mobile gendarmes, aided by a water projectile.
For players and coaches, the match lasted long into the night. Around 22:40, Jean-Marc Furlan, coach of AJ Auxerre, had to end his press conference due to the intrusion of twenty individuals into the press room. The players of both teams were still huddled in their locker rooms. Pascal Dupraz’s men, who did not want to come and talk to the media, did not shower for more than an hour after the match. Auxerrois, along with his family and loved ones, returned to the lawn shortly before midnight to greet about 1,200 Burgundian supporters who set out. Just to brighten up this disastrous evening with a few smiles.