Rangers and Frankfurt fans launch chairs and throw punches as final turns ugly

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This is the dramatic moment brawling football fans trade punches and throw chairs at each other as locals in Seville take refuge in a locked bar.

The Spaniard filming the punch-up shouts to a friend not to risk it as he goes to venture outside to separate the two groups of men Riot police can be seen in the background chasing after Eintracht Frankfurt hooligans who moments earlier had been throwing glasses and other missiles at Rangers fans ahead of Wednesday's Europa League final in the southern Spanish city.

The locals filming the extraordinary scenes could be overheard yelling out: “Give them a good beating, smack them, smack them” as the heavily-armed police tried to clear the German ultras from the area.

The violence outside the bar where the Spaniards had locked themselves in appeared to come out of nowhere after German hooligans wearing balaclavas had walked by menacingly moments earlier.

The man who was the first to be hit had been sat down with friends at one of the tables and appeared to have taken no part in the violence that led to riot police being mobilised and ended with the arrests of five Germans for public order offences.

Another, thought to be a Rangers fan, although his nationality has not been officially confirmed, felt the full force of a right hook to his head in a surprise ambush before all hell broke loose and the brawlers began to use chairs as weapons.

The Spaniards filming the violence provided a running commentary as if it were a boxing match, with one shouting: “Jesus, they’ve really hurt him” as they recorded the moment one of the chairs was hurled through the air by the man who received the first punch and hit its intended target full on.

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Spanish police confirmed after they had quelled the trouble around midnight last night that they had made five arrests. A spokesman, responding to footage showing German hooligans throwing flares at Rangers fans in Seville’s famous Paseo de Cristobal Colon boulevard which is better known just as Paseo Colon, said: “Rapid police response units who were in San Francisco Square had to intervene to deal with an incident sparked by a group of 200 Eintracht Frankfurt fans who were attacking Rangers supporters.

“When they saw police arrive, the German fans started to flee in the direction of Paseo Colon, assaulting Rangers supporters as they ran and clashing with police trying to stop the attack on the Rangers fans.

“At that moment the Eintracht Frankfurt fans began to throw glasses, flares and tables at police officers. When they were 100 metres from the bars on Paseo de Colon where it meets Adriano Street, officers managed to neutralise the situation with a police line formed with riot vans and by firing warning shots in the air.”

The spokesman added: “There were no serious injuries as a result of these incidents, except for a Rangers supporter who suffered a head wound. The police arrested four German fans on Paseo de Colon and another German in a square called La Puerta de Jerez.”

Bar owners in Seville told on Wednesday how a mob of violent Germans attacked Rangers fans without warning last night before police stepped in to make the arrests.

One, whose terrace was destroyed, described the violent Eintracht Frankfurt ultras as “animals” and praised the Rangers supporters for their “exemplary” behaviour. The Spanish businessman, who asked not to be named for fear of reprisals, said: “This wave of Germans just appeared out of nowhere around midnight and destroyed everything in their path.

“They attacked people at random with punches and kicks and then moved on. I’ve been told one of the men you see in the videos doing the rounds, a bloke wearing a balaclava at the front of the pack, put someone in hospital by kicking them in the chest.

“The Rangers fans had been in my bar all day, drinking like champions and enjoying themselves, and had been behaving really well. I can’t praise them enough. It was 100 per cent the German ultras who started all the problems. It was gratuitous violence, random attacks on anyone in their path. They behaved like animals.”

Referring to the violence in Seville in March when Eintracht Frankfurt fans were accused of instigating a fight with West Ham supporters following the teams’ Europa League ties in the southern Spanish city, the bar owner added: “It’s the second time this year the Eintracht Frankfurt supporters have caused problems here.

“I don’t know yet how much damage has been done to my place but I’ve decided not to open tonight. I normally open till about 12.30 or 1am and I’ve been opening this week till then with no problems until last night. I think it will be madness to open tonight. I’ll be closing up around 10pm.”

Wednesday's Europa League final kicks off at 9pm local time in the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan stadium.

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