The French league match between Lens and defending champions Lille was interrupted for nearly 30 minutes after fans from northern rivals clashed at halftime on Saturday.
After the first half ended, a large group of Lens supporters invaded the field and ran away where they fought with Lille fans. The riot police and the stewards intervened and took them off the ground. An emergency meeting was held to decide whether the match should continue at Stade Bollart.
But after the start of the second half, there were no further disturbances and Lens went on to win 1–0. Lens are unbeaten under coach Frank Haise and are in second place.
Lille has won only once and the pressure is mounting on coach Jocelyn Gauravenek, whose team is ranked 13th and has scored 12 goals in six matches.
It is the second high-profile incident of the season in France after a serious glitch in a Nice-Marseille game in August that was suspended for 90 minutes and called off. Good fans stormed the field and punches were exchanged with Marseille’s players and staff. It has been rescheduled for October 27th.
American winger Timothy Weh recovered from a thigh injury and went for Lille in the 62nd minute and appeared for the first time since 21 August. He was the son of Liberian president and former FIFA player of the year George V, who missed three World Cup qualifiers. .
Experienced striker Burak Yilmaz came close to scoring for Lille in the middle of the second half when he flashed a header over the crossbar from Benjamin Andre’s cross.
Moments later, Yilmaz was thwarted by goalkeeper Jean-Louis Lecca with a dive to his feet.
Poland midfielder Przemysaw Frankowski missed the opportunity in the 73rd after being set up by Gail Kakuta. It was Francoski’s first goal since joining Major League Soccer club Chicago Fire.
After forward Wesley Said had a second goal for Lille after a video replay, Lecca denied Yilmaz again as he broke in stoppage time.
In addition, South Korean striker Hwang Ui-jo scored early and caught the late winner as Bordeaux secured their first victory with a 2–1 win over Saint-Etienne and moved up to 14th from the bottom.
Saint-Etienne, who leveled in 72nd through forward Wahbi Khajri, are one of three teams to have won a game so far and are in 19th place.
Lionel Messi prepares for his home debut as leaders Paris Saint-Germain go on to face Lyon for a sixth consecutive win.
Messi played his first full game midweek in a 0-0 draw at Club Brugge, but the crowd at the Parc des Princes are ready for their first glimpse after his surprise move from Barcelona.
PSG striker Kylian Mbappe awaits a fitness test after spraining his ankle against Brugge on Sunday morning.
Elsewhere, unbeaten Nice are battling against hosts Monaco in the French Riviera derby and third-placed Angers take on Nantes.