Monday, June 07, 2010

Nigeria vs North Korea: South African soccer fans stampede

SHOOT: As soccer fans generally do...
clipped from

TEMBISA, South Africa — Thousands of soccer fans stampeded the gates outside a stadium Sunday before a World Cup warmup match between Nigeria and North Korea, leaving several people injured.

Several fans could be seen falling under the rush of people, many wearing Nigeria jerseys. The Makhulong Stadium in the Johannesburg suburb seats about 12,000 fans.

"The crowd just overpowered me and I went down," said Japhta Mombelo, who was bleeding from the head. "I fell down and people just fell over me.

"That crowd is overpowering. The police have told me to stay around and they will organize an ambulance but I am still waiting."

The Nigeria and North Korean teams were lining up for the national anthems when the second surge happened. They had no idea what was going on outside.

Such incidents frequently happen in soccer. Last year, FIFA fined Ivory Coast's federation $46,800 after 22 people died in a stampede at a World Cup qualifying match.

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