Afan has been ordered to serve 14 weeks in jail after on Monday to assaulting captain during the Second City derby on Sunday, reported.
Paul Mitchell, who ran onto the pitch at St. Andrew’s and punched Grealish in the side of the head from behind, has been banned from attending football matches in the United Kingdom for 10 years and was also ordered to pay £350 in fines.
Before the sentence was announced, Mitchell’s solicitor, Vaughn Whistance, said his client had no explanation for the incident.
“He cannot explain what came over him yesterday morning,” Whistance said of Mitchell. “His initial foolish intention was to just go onto the pitch and whip up the crowd.”
Additionally, Whistance said Mitchell’s family has been forced to leave the Birmingham area as a result of online threats. The West Midlands Police confirmed it’s investigating complaints regarding social media posts.
In court, prosecutor Jonathan Purser said the Aston Villa captain – who managed to remain in Sunday’s match and later scored the winning goal – felt lasting pain from the blow but suffered no substantial injury.
“I cannot help but feel how lucky I was in this incident,” Grealish added in a statement read by Purser.
“It could have so much worse had the supporter had some sort of weapon.”
In a separate incident on Sunday, another supporter ran onto the pitch at the Emirates Stadium during‘s win over .
The Football Association released aMonday in response to the spate of pitch invasions, saying that such behavior won’t be tolerated and that various parties will be contacted in order to discuss ways to resolve the issue.
“This weekend a line has been crossed in terms of fan behaviour. On Sunday we saw two separate incidents, at Birmingham City and Arsenal, of individuals entering the field of play and assaulting players,” the FA statement read.
“Not only is it an offence to enter the pitch, which could result in a club ban and criminal charges for the individual, but it also puts the safety of the players at risk. This is entirely unacceptable and we strongly condemn both incidents.
“We will be working with the clubs, the leagues, and the police to discuss what collectively needs to be done to protect players and officials on the pitch.”
Meanwhile, Birmingham Cityafter the match, confirmed that Mitchell, 27, has been issued a lifetime ban from St. Andrew’s, and said the club would support any further punishment “in the eyes of the law.”
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