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Police injured after clashes with Legia fans at Aston Villa

James Baylis - AMA / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Three police officers were injured after Legia Warsaw fans were involved in violent clashes before their Europa Conference League game at Aston Villa on Thursday.

Flares and missiles were thrown at police as the Legia fans were held in a coach park near Villa's stadium.

The game started at its scheduled 2000 GMT time, but no Legia fans were allowed into Villa Park ahead of kick-off.

A Birmingham Police statement on X, formerly known as Twitter, read: "We're currently unable to allow away fans into Villa Park following disorder outside the stadium which has seen missiles thrown at officers.

"Three officers have already been injured and a significant policing operation continues. Please avoid Witton Lane where possible."

The Polish club had their ticket allocation reduced to just under 1,000 after concerns over potential crowd trouble.

Ticketless Legia fans vowed to travel to Birmingham regardless of the reduced allocation.

Legia supporters were met by a wall of police officers wearing helmets with visors to protect themselves when they marched towards Villa Park.

The flares were let off as they were penned in, sparking the incident that led to the police injuries.

During the match, the section of Villa Park usually reserved for visiting fans was left completely empty, but there was further crowd trouble outside the stadium.

Videos on social media showed a group of Legia fans gathered in a street hurling bottles towards Villa supporters who were looking down on them from inside the ground.

In a statement on X, the club said: "Aston Villa Football Club can confirm that no away fans were allowed into Villa Park for this evening's UEFA Europa Conference League fixture with Legia Warsaw on the advice of West Midlands Police following large-scale disorder outside the stadium caused by visiting supporters."

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