- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 24, 2014

A preseason match between Israeli soccer team Maccabi Haifa and France’s Lille was brought to an abrupt end in Austria on Wednesday when a group of protesters waving Palestinian flags stormed the field and began attacking Israeli players.

Palestinian protesters, supposedly of Turkish origin, rushed onto the pitch in the 86th minute and began punching and kicking members of the Maccabi squad, The Daily Mail reported.

Many of the attackers carried banners calling for the liberation of Palestine.

Maccabi coach Aleksander Stanojevic was said to have punched a protester before getting punched in the face in the dugout.

Security struggled to remove the protesters while many Maccabi players fled down the tunnel to their dressing room, Metro reported.

A referee was forced to stop the game before eventually bringing it to an early end. Lille was winning 2-0.

The match was played in Austria, because UEFA last month forbid Israel from hosting matches due to unrest in the country.

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