An Aston Villa caterer who tried to run onto the pitch during Wolves’ Johnstone’s Paint Trophy clash with rivals Walsall did so while ‘intoxicated’, a court was told.
Benjamin Allen, aged 20, was urged on by friends who had taken him to the match at Molineux on September 3.
Wolverhampton Magistrates Court heard yesterday how Allen jumped the barrier after Bakary Sako put Wolves 2-1 ahead in the match.
Wolves went on to win 4-2 on penalties after the game finished 2-2 in 90 minutes.
Mrs Maggie Meakin, prosecuting, said: “After the second goal for Wolves went in he was seen climbing over the barrier and attempting to run on the pitch. He was stopped and taken away by stewards and when arrested he was unco-operative with officers until his arrival into the custody suite.
"He said to police he was intoxicated before he entered the ground. He later apologised to the officers and told them it was completely out of character.”
Mrs Meakin told magistrates had Allen made it onto the pitch they would have been seeking a football banning order.
Allen’s defence solicitor Mr Richard Quinn said the defendant, who is originally from Blackburn, came to the West Midlands to study to be a mental health nurse.
Mr Quinn said: “He was taken by his friends to the match and was urged to run onto the playing area but fortunately he was stopped.
“If one crosses any barrier that prevents members of the public getting onto the pitch then they breach the football offences act. He works at Villa Park and is part of the catering team and works on match days. He has no previous convictions and is studying to be a mental health nurse which gives an indication of the character he is.”
Allen of Park Road West, Whitmore Reans, Wolverhampton, pleaded guilty to going onto the playing area at a football match. He was given a 12 month conditional discharge by magistrates.
Allen also has to pay £85 in costs and a £15 victim surcharge.