Leeds fan jailed for assaulting Newcastle boss Eddie Howe during match

The Leeds United fan who assaulted Newcastle United manager Eddie Howe during a match between the two sides has been jailed.

David Derbyshire, 35, has been handed a 12-week prison sentence and a six-year football banning order at Leeds Magistrates Court.

The incident took place during the 93rd minute of the 2-2 draw at Elland Road on 13th May and was broadcast on live television.

Derbyshire left his seat in the stands and entered the Newcastle pitch-side technical area and had a verbal altercation with Howe before pushing the Magpie boss’ left shoulder.

He was subsequently escorted away by security before being arrested by West Yorkshire Police, with Leeds later banning him for life.

Derbyshire pleaded guilty to charges of entering the playing area at a designated football match without lawful excuse and common assault on 21st July.

Chief Superintendent Richard Close, who led the policing operation at the match in question, said: ‘Criminal behaviour of this kind is completely unacceptable, particularly where club staff or players are targeted during a large-scale sports event such as this.

‘I know that fans of the sport, regardless of their club affiliations, will join us in condemning anyone who acts in this way. 

‘We will always treat incidents like this very seriously and we work closely with Leeds United and visiting clubs to fully investigate any offences and take robust action against those responsible, including seeking football banning orders against them.’

Speaking to BT Sport soon after the incident, Howe was clearly shaken by the assualt, saying: ‘That was a real surprise. I was concentrating on the game. It was the last thing you think could happen.

‘I can’t repeat what he said but it makes you think “what if?”.

‘It was personal to me. I can’t remember if he pushed me or not, it was such a strange thing to happen. Moments like that make you think.’

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