Swindon players ‘physically abused’ by fans after play-off defeat to Port Vale, says Ben Garner

Swindon players ‘physically abused’ by fans after play-off defeat to Port Vale, says Ben Garner

Swindon head coach Ben Garner says his players were “physically and verbally abused” by Port Vale supporters who stormed the pitch following his side’s play-off defeat at Vale Park.

Swindon won the first leg 2-1 at home but were beaten 1-0 by their hosts on Thursday night, with Port Vale eventually winning the tie 6-5 on penalties to progress to the League Two play-off final.

The deciding spot-kick was missed by the Robins’ Ellis Iandolo, which prompted the home fans to invade the field as the visitors tried to make a hasty exit.

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Swindon head coach Ben Garner gives his thoughts after seeing his side lose to Port Vale on penalties

However, some Swindon players appeared to be involved in confrontations with Port Vale supporters, and Garner was furious with the treatment he says his side received.

Speaking to Sky Sports, the Swindon boss said: “Players have been physically and verbally abused. I know I’ve seen it in some of the other play-off games.

“I don’t know where we’re going as a country. It’s absolutely disgusting.”

Swindon right-back Mandela Egbo accused Port Vale fans of attacking him during the pitch invasion, later posting on Twitter: “How you scummy fans get two free shots and only manage a scratch?

“And I’m supposed to keep my cool – if I react I’m the bad guy right?”

Sky Sports News has approached Port Vale for comment.

The alleged abuse comes just two days after Sheffield United captain Billy Sharp was headbutted by a Nottingham Forest supporter after his side’s play-off defeat prompted another pitch invasion.

On Thursday, a man was jailed for 24 weeks for the attack.

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