Fan admits pitch assault on Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale
A man has admitted attacking Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale following the north London derby at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium last month.
Ramsdale, 24, was kicked in the back after the Gunners beat Spurs 2-0 in the Premier League match on 15 January.
Joseph Watts, 35, from Dalston, Hackney, appeared at Uxbridge Magistrates’ Court where he pleaded guilty to assault by beating.
He also admitted throwing four coins on to the pitch during the match.
Ramsdale had been instrumental in securing Arsenal’s 2-0 win in the north London derby between the two close rivals.
The court heard he had been celebrating the victory and collecting his belongings from behind the goal when he was attacked.
In a victim statement read to the court, Ramsdale said he had to see a masseuse because his back felt “heavy”, but there were no marks to his skin.
“I’ve never had someone enter the pitch and kick me, I don’t think it’s acceptable that I should be assaulted at work,” he said.
The England international added he had become more wary about similar incidents happening in the future.
In addition to the assault charge, Tottenham fan Watts pleaded guilty to throwing a missile onto a football playing area and going on to an area adjacent to a playing area.
Shortly after the attack, Tottenham said the fan would face “an immediate ban”.
The Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) and the Football Association (FA) also condemned what happened.