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20 Mar, 2022 19:21

Grenades thrown by football fans ‘blow holes in pitch’ before derby in Argentina (VIDEO)

Kickoff in the derby match was delayed after fans threw pyrotechnics onto the grass
Grenades thrown by football fans ‘blow holes in pitch’ before derby in Argentina (VIDEO)

A derby showdown between Rosario Central and Newell's Old Boys was delayed on Sunday after fans detonated several grenades which reports say ‘blew holes in the pitch’ ahead of kick-off in the Primera Division game.

The match between the two rivals is dubbed the Clasico Rosarino in Argentina and often plays host to crowd trouble and a hostile atmosphere – but it seems that some fans took the hostilities a little too far at Rosario's Estadio Gigante de Arroyito after video footage emerged on social media of dangerous pyrotechnics being thrown onto the turf before the first ball was kicked.

Clips of the grenades appear to show one initially detonating much like a smoke bomb, quickly followed by a secondary blast which produced a visible shockwave around it.

Had the projectile detonated around a player or official, it is likely they could have been seriously injured.

An English-speaking Twitter account associated with Newell's Old Boys updated fans about the hold-up before the start of the match.

“Kick-off is being delayed as the referee is briefed by the Head of Security," it said.

"A number of grenades that were thrown onto the pitch have made holes in the pitch."

The club added: “Teams are on the pitch. A few bombs are thrown onto the pitch and explode as the teams line up for their photos.

"There is now smoke filling one of the penalty boxes. The referee was briefed by the Head of Security following the incident."

There have been no reports of injuries from the grenades, which were thrown days after thousands of Newell's Old Boys fans gathered at the club's Estadio Marcelo Bielsa to light pyrotechnics in a show of support ahead of the Clasico.

Newell's Old Boys is known for being one of the most successful exporters of Argentine football talent, having produced the likes of Lionel Messi, Gabriel Batistuta, Jorge Valdano and Mauricio Pochettino from their famed youth academy. 

Diego Maradona also briefly represented the team in 1993 and 1994, three years before the 1986 World Cup winner retired from playing.

Once the game started, Newell's Old Boys won 1-0 courtesy of forward Juan Manuel Garcia's 51st-minute goal.

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