A visiting Chelsea supporter who alleges he was struck by a coin thrown by a West Ham fan at the former Olympic Stadium on Wednesday night has criticised the attempted segregation outside the ground.
The Football Association has launched an investigation into the violence which marred West Ham’s EFL Cup London derby win over Chelsea.
Police made seven arrests after skirmishes broke out towards the end of the Hammers’ impressive 2-1 fourth-round win as police and stewards battled to maintain segregation behind the goal being defended by West Ham.
Coins, seats and other objects appeared to be thrown between rival supporters, with the Hammers and Chelsea condemning the unsavoury scenes which are now under investigation by the FA.
Steve Cutting claims he was hit by a coin thrown after Cheikhou Kouyate’s 11th-minute goal.
Cutting, a Chelsea supporter for more than 40 years, said: “As soon as they scored there was abuse being hurled over and we were watching the game and all of a sudden I felt a massive thump on the side of my head, thinking it was a bottle or a stone.
“I put my hand up to my head and realised I’d been cut. I looked down and there were some coins, 50p and pound coins.”
Cutting does not believe the separation outside the ground was adequate.
“Coming out of the stadium was a free for all,” he added.
“To get back to Stratford station was ridiculous. It was running battles again, groups of people fighting and trying to get to each other.
“There’s no real clear proper way to get people back to the station safely.”
Cutting was in attendance with friends, including one called ‘Stuart’, who took a photo of Cutting’s bloodstained head and posted it on Twitter.
“From Stratford station to that stadium is unpoliceable,” said Stuart, who did not wish to share his surname.
“It was almost like anarchy last night.”
West Ham vowed to punish any perpetrators identified.
The Hammers have been occupants of the London Stadium for just nine competitive games after leaving Upton Park in May – and 23 fans have already been banned.
There had been disturbances in the stands and outside the ground at some of West Ham’s previous home matches. The capacity is capped at 57,000 and 45,957 were in attendance, along with a heavy police presence.