Roma fan, 30, pleads guilty to assaulting Liverpool supporter

Sean Cox was left in a coma following an attack by Roma supporters outside Anfield in April

Sean Cox was left in a coma following an attack by Roma supporters outside Anfield in April

Sean Cox was left in a coma following an attack by Roma supporters outside Anfield in April

Simone Mastrelli, 30, has pleaded guilty at Preston Crown Court to assaulting Sean Cox, 53, outside Anfield stadium ahead of a Champions League tie between Liverpool FC and AS Roma last April. 

Irishman Cox was attacked by Roma supporters before the semi-final first leg at Anfield.

He suffered a severe, traumatic brain injury in the attack and was left in a coma for nearly three months.

Pictures taken outside the stadium showed one fan wielding a hammer.  

Mastrelli was extradited to the UK last month after being arrested on a European Arrest Warrant in his home country. 

Sentencing by the Recorder of Preston, Judge Mark Brown, will follow shortly.  Mr Cox’s wife, Martina, was in court for today’s hearing. 

Pictured: Fans outside Anfield fighting with one another on the same day that Mr Cox was punched to the floor 

Pictured: Fans outside Anfield fighting with one another on the same day that Mr Cox was punched to the floor 

Pictured: Fans outside Anfield fighting with one another on the same day that Mr Cox was punched to the floor 

Pictures that surfaced from outside Anfield Stadium during the disorder show one person carrying a hammer 

Pictures that surfaced from outside Anfield Stadium during the disorder show one person carrying a hammer 

Pictures that surfaced from outside Anfield Stadium during the disorder show one person carrying a hammer 

Footballing figures including Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp and Everton defender Seamus Coleman made donations on a GoFundMe page to support his recovery and Roma followed suit. 

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp made a generous donation  of £4,500 (€5,000) to the Support Sean appeal, which was set up after Cox was punched to the ground.

Klopp's men held up banners emblazoned with messages of support after winning in Rome

Klopp's men held up banners emblazoned with messages of support after winning in Rome

Klopp’s men held up banners emblazoned with messages of support after winning in Rome

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp made a generous donation to Reds fan Sean Cox after he was punched to the ground outside Anfield 

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp made a generous donation to Reds fan Sean Cox after he was punched to the ground outside Anfield 

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp made a generous donation to Reds fan Sean Cox after he was punched to the ground outside Anfield 

Later on Friday, Everton's Seamus Coleman joined Klopp in donating £4,500 to the appeal

Later on Friday, Everton's Seamus Coleman joined Klopp in donating £4,500 to the appeal

Later on Friday, Everton’s Seamus Coleman joined Klopp in donating £4,500 to the appeal

Klopp donated £4,500 (€5,000) to Support Sean appeal on Cox's gofundme page on Friday

Klopp donated £4,500 (€5,000) to Support Sean appeal on Cox's gofundme page on Friday

Klopp donated £4,500 (€5,000) to Support Sean appeal on Cox’s gofundme page on Friday

Both Liverpool and Roma displayed messages of solidarity for Cox in the build-up to the second leg with Roma players wearing ‘Forza Sean’ t-shirts in training.

Klopp’s men also held up banners emblazoned with messages of support which was brought by travelling Liverpool fans after they booked their spot in the Champions League final on May 2.

The fundraising page set up for Mr Cox has so far raised £858,213.36 and you can support it here.  

Page administrators wrote that Mr Cox recently started a programme of rehabilitation in Dun Laoghaire but will require funding for years to come if he wishes to continue.

Another Roma fan, Filippo Lombardi, 21, was cleared of inflicting grievous bodily harm on Mr Cox in October, though he was jailed for three years for violent disorder.

A third man, Daniele Sciusco, 29, from Rome, admitted violent disorder ahead of the match and was jailed for two-and-a-half years in August 2018.

 

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