Evra issued red card before start of match for kicking fan

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REUTERS/Philippe Laurenson

Marseille defender Patrice Evra made Europa League history Thursday, for all the wrong reasons.

The French full-back was issued a straight red card before his side's latest tilt against Vitoria for angrily kicking one of his team's own fans on the sidelines behind the goal during pre-match warm-ups. He becomes the first player in the Europa League to be sent down the tunnels before kick-off.

It's not clear what provoked Evra's violent outburst, though the 36-year-old was the subject of insults from the sidelines, according to The Telegraph.

The incident kicked off the affair on a sour note, with the second-placed Group I outfit looking for all three points over last-placed Vitoria in order to leapfrog FC Salzburg.