Video: Hearts fan banned from all UK grounds for falling down stairs
A HEARTS fan whose nosedive down the stands at Tynecastle made him an internet sensation claims the mishap has seen him banned from every football ground in the UK.
Francesco Fortucci, 36, suffered a nasty gash to his head after plummeting down a flight of concrete stairs during Thursday’s Edinburgh derby.
Footage of the calamity – captured on a Hibs supporter’s mobile phone – has clocked up more than 510,000 views since it was posted online three days ago.
But the crunching tumble – which has generated a raft of worried comments from football fans – has seen him banned from every football stadium in the UK.
The Jambos diehard took to Facebook to air his distress.
He said: “Entering a stadium while drunk. Currently banned from all stadia in UK . . . harsh.”
The barber had earlier told pals his alleged ban is indicative of everything that is wrong with the game.
He said: “There’s no denying it’s a sore one, however if I receive a banning order for simply falling then this will tell you everything that is wrong with Scottish football. I’m not the first person to fall down stairs at football and I won’t be the last.”
Mr Fortucci claimed that despite reports he had been helped back to his seat by Hearts ground staff, he had instead been taken straight from Tynecastle to a nearby police station.
He claimed: “Ushered back to my seat? P**h – try ushered down to St Leonard’s.”
It is understood Hearts security took no action over the accident which saw Mr Fortucci painfully somersault a pitchside gate and are not believed to be responsible for the banning order.
Lothian and Borders Police said any ban received by Mr Fortucci may be included in bail conditions, if he was arrested for his behaviour at the Edinburgh derby.
Fans at the game took to internet forums to discuss the trip.
One Hibs fan, Gunnerhibby, said on Hibees Bounce: “As he went down the stairs he seemed to miss one step then tried to compensate for it but his momentum just kept going. His triple salco at the bottom would easily have earned him a 6.0 at the Winter Olympics.”
Another, ajgoalie, said: “Great fall, lovely technique and the flip at the end! 8 points”, while WBFC1995 remarked: “Thanks for filming this, it made my day. Hahaha poor fella.”
Hearts fan Markhmfc123 said: “I seen this happen from section G and while he was lying in pain he was actually doing the 1-5 so get it right up the Hibees that were laughing!”
LMWYBC1996 said: “I’m a Hearts fan, and I found this pretty funny. Glad the guy’s OK; looked a sare yen.”
Mr Fortucci was unavailable for comment last night, and no-one was available for comment at the hairdressers he works at.
We told on Saturday how Justice Minister Kenny MacAskill believes late-night kick-offs should be reviewed following the controversial game which saw a ballboy allegedly spat at.
Coins were also thrown by opposing fans and a flare thrown at the Hibs support. Mr MacAskill said the scenes were “totally unacceptable”.
Half a million watch supporter’s spectacular fall
HIBS fan Jay Glass said capturing footage of the tumbling Jambo on his mobile phone had been a “complete fluke”.
The 26-year-old, who is a manager at city nightclub Why Not?, had been scanning both sets of supporters with his phone’s camera.
He said: “I was at the game with a friend and it was such a good atmosphere that I was panning across the fans with my phone. I hadn’t noticed the guy falling at the time, it was only afterwards that I saw it.
“It was total fluke. I was pretty surprised at what I had recorded and was obviously laughing quite a bit.”
The Hibs fan showed a couple of friends the clip before uploading it to video-sharing site YouTube. It has racked up more than 510,000 views in three days.
He said: “I didn’t think I would get anything like the number it has.
“Some were worrying that he had been badly hurt, but he picked himself up and seemed to be alright.
“Hibs fans seem to have enjoyed the clip and Hearts fans have been taking it well, too.”