Players and fans don’t always agree. However, things get a little too heated sometimes. It’s never a pretty sight when fans and players collide and here are the top 5 player-fan clashes of all time.
1. Eric Cantona gives a fan free kung-fu lessons
Eric Cantona was called “King” Eric for a reason. He frankly didn’t give a damn. If he felt like lobbing a keeper from a crazy angle, he would. If he felt like dribbling past an entire defense, he would. If he felt like leaping into the stands and lashing out at a fan in a manner Bruce Lee would be proud of, he most certainly would.
Manchester United were playing Crystal Palace in the league when Eric Cantona got sent off for the Reds in the 48th minute. On the way to the tunnel, Crystal Palace fan Matthew Simmons started hurling abuse at the Frenchman, who ignored it till Simmons apparently said something rude about Eric’s mum.
Cantona stopped, turned around and kung-fu kicked Simmons and then exchanged a few punches before being dragged away by stewards and United’s kit man. He was fined 200,000 pounds by his club and banned from football by the F.A for nine months.
At a press conference following the incident, Cantona explained – “When the seagulls follow the trawler, it’s because they think sardines will be thrown into the sea.” Indeed.
- This picture shows the incident where Manchester United legend Eric Cantona kung-fu kicked Crystal Palace fan Matthew Simmons. To this day, this remains one of the most iconic pictures in Premier League history.