Melbourne City goalkeeper Tom Glover calls pitch invasion disappointing ‘for Australian football’

The Melbourne City goalkeeper who was hit by a metal bucket during Saturday’s violent pitch invasion has described the incident as “disappointing for football”.

Tom Glover was concussed and required stitches after about 150 people invaded the pitch during the derby against Melbourne Victory.

“It’s disappointing for football, but I’m OK,” Glover told reporters on Monday.

Fans from both teams had planned to walk out at the 20-minute mark of Saturday night’s game to protest the sale of the next three grand finals to Sydney.

A contingent of the fans were lighting flares, which are banned at matches. A flare hit and injured a Network 10 cameraman before Glover picked up another flare from the ground and threw it back in the stands. 

Police say about 150 people then rushed the pitch, including one who threw a metal bucket which hit Glover and referee Alex King.

Glover had a bandage on his head on Monday and spoke briefly spoke as he entered City’s training facilities.

He said the incident was disappointing “more for Australian football itself”.

“The Socceroos are unbelievable,” he said.

“And you know, [we’re] hopefully riding the wave of that.

“But yeah, small minority which kind of ruins it.”

A blonde man with a bandage on his head.
Tom Glover says it was not his intention to throw the flare back at the crowd.(ABC News)

The ugly scenes have been described as one of the most damaging moments the Australian game has ever seen.

The chief executive of the Australian Professional League denied there was a cultural problem within the A-League on the same day.

Police have launched Operation Astute to investigate the invasion and have begun interviewing people who are believed to have been involved.

“The police investigation is doing their thing,” Glover sad.

“For me, it’s just getting back on the pitch and getting back next week.”

Glover said he was unable to train until Tuesday due to injury protocols but was “ready to go”.

Asked whether he regretted throwing the flare back towards the crowd, Glover said “my intentions were never to throw it over the fence”.

Melbourne Victory was officially served a show-cause notice by Football Australia on Monday, giving the club until Wednesday to explain why it should not face sanctions.

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