SHEFFIELD UNITED captain Billy Sharp required stitches after a vicious attack from a Nottingham Forest supporter invading the pitch during wild celebrations at the City Ground.
Robert Biggs, 30, from Derbyshire, has been charged with assault and walked onto the pitch at a football match.
Brice Samba was the hero as Nottingham Forest reached the Championship play-off final at Wembley, saving three penalties in the shoot-out.
But the evening was completely spoiled by a nefarious attack on Blades forward Sharp, 36, who was watching the celebrations.
Sky Sports caught a yob running at full speed towards Sharp just seconds after the penalties and sent him down with a headbutt.
A club spokesman confirmed to the media that Sharp required stitches following the disgusting incident.
Do you know the Pitch Invader? Call the news desk on 0207 782 4104 or WhatsApp us on 07423720250
Angry United manager Paul Heckingbottom said: “It’s an attack. We saw one of our players get attacked.
“He’s shattered, bleeding, angry.
Heckingbottom added: “We see things being thrown at the pitch and things being thrown at it endangering the health and safety of players and nothing has ever been done about it.
“Something is being done. We saw what happened, we know what happened. There is no doubt that there is a prison sentence.
Most read in the Premier League
“How can you get into a job minding your own business and be attacked that way?
“It’s just not okay and everything is wrong. Too often we hear people condemn it, but nothing is done about it. We are the ones who suffered.
“It’s disturbing for many reasons – I don’t want to say too much more about it. He will be treated.”
Deputy Chief Constable Rob Griffin of Nottinghamshire Police said: “I am delighted that we have now charged a suspect in connection with this attack. This is the result of hard work done throughout the night and involving numerous police departments today.
“We continue to work closely with both football clubs who are supporting our investigation following this incident.
“Hopefully cases like this will serve as a deterrent for anyone thinking of getting involved in violent riots at football matches. Incidents are taken extremely seriously by the force and football clubs and those involved will be held accountable.”
Forest later issued a statement saying they were “appalled” by the treatment of Sharp, who played for the club on loan in the 2012/13 season.
It read: “Nottingham Forest Football Club is appalled to learn that our former player Billy Sharp was attacked as he left the pitch after today’s game at the City Ground.
“The club will work with authorities to locate the individual so he can be held accountable for his actions, which include a lifetime ban from Nottingham Forest.
“The club would also like to apologize to Billy personally and to Sheffield United Football Club.”
The next morning, Sharp released his own statement on social media.
It read: “A mindless idiot ruined an incredible night of football.
“Congratulations to Nottingham Forest on their win and good luck in the final. As an ex-Forest player, I’m not going to let a bastard ruin my respect for Forest fans.
“Incredibly proud to be captain of this group of Sheffield United players, they gave it their all and can hold their heads high. We will come back and leave again. Thank you for all your messages of support after the incident.”
Nottingham Forest reached the play-off final at Wembley with a 3-2 win on penalties after the Blades put the game ahead with a 2-1 win.
Forest warden Brice Samba saved three penalties in the shootout and secured his team’s place in the play-off final against Huddersfield.
https://www.the-sun.com/sport/football/premier-league/5362521/billy-sharp-attack-video-nottingham-forest-pitch-invader-charged/ The Nottingham Forest pitch invader, 30, attacked after Sheffield Utd’s Billy Sharp walked and required stitches in a brutal attack