Olympiacos-Panathinaikos Derby Abandoned as Player Hit by Firework on Warm-up; Teammates Refuse to Return for Completion

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Olympiacos’ Greek Super League clash against Panathinaikos was abandoned on Sunday after a player was struck by a firework.

The two Greek outfits, who have long been bitter and fierce rivals, were tied at 1-1 before the match was called off early in the second half.

Five minutes after the break, Panathinaikos substitute Juankar began warming up on the touchline and was struck by a firework thrown from the crowd.

The incident occurred shortly after the hosts had equalised.  

He fell to the floor on the edge of the pitch and was quickly checked on by his team-mates, before play was suspended for approximately an hour as players left the field down the tunnel.

Olympiacos’ match with Panathinaikos was abandoned after a player was struck by a firework

Juankar received treatment on the touchline and was then carried away in a medic's buggy

Juankar received treatment on the touchline and was then carried away in a medic’s buggy

The Spaniard, who is said to have suffered from a loss of hearing after being struck, received treatment on the touchline and was subsequently carried away in a medic’s buggy.

Shortly after the incident, and while the player was being tended to, Panathinaikos tweeted: ‘A firecracker falls on the players of our team who are warming up. Juankar is on the ground injured.

‘Interruption in the match. Our team retires to the locker room.’ 

With fans still inside the stadium during the lengthy delay, the club later delivered an update, suggesting the players were reluctant to return from the dressing rooms.

‘An hour has passed since stoppage time in the derby. Our team remains in the locker room,’ Panathinaikos added.

The decision to abandon the match was relayed to fans via a tannoy announcement at around 9.30pm local time.

The fierce derby between Olympiacos and Panathinaikos has a history of being abandoned, such as in 2019 when the referee was force to stop the match just minutes after a group of 30 fans attacked players in the dugout.

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The fierce derby was called off in 2019 after a group of fans attacked the Olympiacos dugout

The fierce derby was called off in 2019 after a group of fans attacked the Olympiacos dugout

Police were also forced to use tear gas to control crowd chaos outside the stadium.

Olympiacos were awarded the 1-0 victory in 2019 despite the match being called off. 

It is not yet clear how Sunday’s abandoned match will be determined in the record books.

Confirming the match was abandoned, Panathinaikos tweeted: ‘The referee closed the match sheet and the fate of the match will be decided in the courts.’

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