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Oldham to ban fans who invaded pitch during defeat that confirmed relegation

Oldham Athletic v Salford City – Sky Bet League Two – Boundary Park
(Image credit: Lee Morris)

Oldham have announced their intention to issue club bans to supporters who invaded the pitch for almost an hour on Saturday as they suffered relegation from the Football League in defeat to Salford.

The match, which finished in a 2-1 loss for Oldham, was suspended in the 79th minute when protesting Latics fans stormed on to the pitch.

Both sets of players were escorted off the field by referee Bobby Madley with stadium announcements initially saying the match had been abandoned, though it later restarted at 6.28pm behind closed doors.

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A club statement on Tuesday said: “Oldham Athletic is carrying out an investigation on the pitch invasion that occurred in the last home fixture against Salford City.

“The club will again liaise with Greater Manchester Police and efforts are being made to identify those who encroached onto the pitch which is a serious criminal offence.

“Several persons have already been identified and it is almost certain when appropriate club bans will be issued.”

Oldham, who had issues with pitch invasions earlier in the season, are expected to face severe punishment from the Football Association and the EFL.

Prior to the pitch invasion, furious fans chanted “We want our club back” and “We’re not going anywhere” as stewards struggled to maintain order.

The 2-1 defeat was a fourth-straight loss for Oldham, who became the first former Premier League side to drop out of the Football League.

Owner Abdallah Lemsagam has been seeking to sell the club and on Monday, the Oldham board issued a statement taking responsibility for the “total failure” of relegation.

“The Oldham Athletic board of directors is devastated at the club’s relegation,” the statement said. “The issues that have led to this point go back years but the buck stops with the board and relegation represents a total failure.”

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