Wanderers condemn violence in letter to fans

Western Sydney Wanderers have condemned fan violence and reiterated their stance against anti-social behaviour ahead of the club’s highly-anticipated ACL clash with Guangzhou Evergrande.

CEO John Tsatsimas wrote to the club’s 18,700 supporters following several ugly incidents in the wake of the Wanderers 4-3 A-League derby loss at Pirtek Stadium on Saturday.

One fan faces a lengthy ban for slapping Sky Blues defender Aaron Calver, while police have appealed for witnesses after 20 to 30 people allegedly ambushed Sydney fans near Parramatta Station.

According to the police statement: “The attack resulted in a 38-year-old man sustaining a broken arm (and) a 28-year-old man sustained a broken leg which has required multiple surgeries. Two other men received minor injuries, including one with a broken nose.”

Tsatsimas made a point of praising the “passionate and unfaltering” support of the club’s fan base but added that “anti-social behaviour at any Wanderers match will never be tolerated”.

Despite the hard line on flares several were thrown during the derby, at one stage blanketing the Sydney goal with smoke.

Tsatsimas added: “It does not matter what colour jersey or shirt your fellow attendee is wearing we will strive to ensure that there is no behaviour that compromises your match day experience or the safety of you or your fellow spectators.

“Our club has dramatically reduced the number of anti-social incidents since our inception and we remain totally committed to working with the authorities, venue and Football Federation Australia to remove any individual who is misplaced in their belief that Pirtek Stadium or any other venue allows them the right to express themselves illegally or in an anti-social manner.

“Any incidents that arise at any of our home matches will be investigated and serious punishments will be handed down to those involved.”

Chinese giants Guangzhou Evergrande are expected to bring a large contingent of fervent support for Wednesday night’s match.

“We are expecting the largest ever turn out of away supporters experienced at Parramatta Stadium and once again encourage all Red & Black fans to get to the ground early and help cheer the boys home in our Champions League title defence,” Tsatsimas said.