A West Ham fan has gone viral after single-handedly defending a section of the club’s fans against violent rival hooligans.
The unsavoury scenes unfolded at the AFAS stadium after the Premier League side beat Dutch team AZ Alkmaar in the Europa Conference League semi-final 1-0.
In videos capturing the incident, the West Ham fan could be seen defending an area of the stand from a large group of AZ Alkmaar “ultras” who wore dark jackets with their hoods up.
According to reports, the area of the stand they were trying to invade housed the family and friends of West Ham players and staff.
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Footage showed the fan standing at the top of the stairs bravely preventing the mob from reaching them in an incident that caused West Ham players to also rush into the stands.
The fan, reportedly called 'Knollsy' was widely praised online for his actions and one person even called for him to receive a “lifelong season ticket”.
\u201cWest Ham fan "Knollsy" protecting the family stand and fending off AZ ultras\n \u201d— West Ham Central (@West Ham Central) 1684455698
One person joked: “No amount of stone island and balaclavas is a match for TK Max and 20 pints.”
\u201cNo amount of stone island and balaclavas is a match for TK Max and 20 pints\u201d— Shum (@Shum) 1684484134
“What a guy,” another commented.
Someone else said: “About 50 ultras getting held at bay by a steak bake inhaling cockney geeza, fairs.”
\u201cabout 50 ultras getting held at bay by a steak bake inhaling cockney geeza, fairs\u201d— Bamfordinho (@Bamfordinho) 1684481093
Another said: “Give the blokes a lifelong season ticket!!!”
\u201c@WestHam_Central Give the blokes a lifelong season ticket!!!\u201d— West Ham Central (@West Ham Central) 1684455698
Following the match, West Ham manager David Moyes said: “I can't explain what happened and why it happened.
“Players were involved because it was the family section… that was probably the reason for the reaction.
“I don't want that in any way to blight the night because the West Ham fans weren't looking for trouble. Hopefully, they'll look into it.”
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