Victoria, Dec 20 . Football Australia has today issued two life-time bans, one to the spectator known as “Bucket Man” and one other patron, following the organisation’s ongoing investigation into the unacceptable events that unfolded during the Melbourne Derby at AAMI Park on Saturday, 17 December.
In working with Victoria Police, Football Australia issued a 23-year-old man from Craigieburn (Victoria) and a 19-year-old man from Meadow Heights (Victoria) with life-time bans from all related football activity including attending Football Australia-sanctioned football matches and events including all A-Leagues, Australia Cup, National Premier League, and National Team matches and registering as a football participant.
The 23-year-old has been found guilty by Football Australia of entering the field of play without authorisation and using an item (bucket) with the intent to cause damage or harm, which ultimately saw the Melbourne City FC goalkeeper require hospitalisation.
The 19-year-old man has been found guilty by Football Australia of entering the field of play without authorisation and engaging in conduct that did or was likely to cause harm or endanger others.
Since the abandonment of the match, the Victoria Police publicly announced that these two people have also been subject to a range of charges – varying in all cases – including violent disorder; alleged assault of a security guard and alleged assault of goalkeeper; possession of a flare; discharge missile; entry to sporting competition space; disrupting a match; public nuisance; riotous behaviour; and discharge and possess flare.
The action of these people brought the game into disrepute. Such conduct is a breach of A-League Terms of Admission, which requires that all persons must comply with the Football Australia Spectator Code of Behaviour.
Football Australia CEO James Johnson said these bans will be the first of many that the sport’s governing body expects to issue as part of this ongoing investigation.
“The actions of these two, and others who are of interest to us, are completely unacceptable and those people and their behaviours will never be welcome in our game,” Johnson said.
“Football has a zero-tolerance policy to disruptive, destructive, violent, and anti-social behaviour at its sanctioned events, and it will not tolerate behaviour that has the potential to threaten the safety or security of spectators, players, and officials. These significant bans against these individuals are consistent with this position.
“Football Australia is working around the clock on this investigation to ensure that the scenes witnessed at AAMI Park in Melbourne are never repeated again,” Johnson concluded.