Everton fans were criticised as they appear to throw bottles at Matty Cash and Lucas Digne after Aston Villa got their opener on Saturday.
Emiliano Buendia put the away side ahead on the stroke of half time, however the game was marred by an incident in the goal celebrations.
A late, late corner was sent into the box and Buendia rose highest to flick a decent header beyond Jordan Pickford and into the far corner.
As the Villa players went towards one corner of the ground, two players were struck by a bottle before falling to the ground in pain.
A bottle was thrown at Aston Villa players while they were celebrating the opener.
Matty Cash and Lucas Digne were struck by the projectile. pic.twitter.com/pvnqo1kGw2
— MailOnline Sport (@MailSport) January 22, 2022
The BBC’s Gary Rose said via their matchday blog: “These are horrible scenes as some of the celebrating Aston Villa players appear to have been hit by objects from the crowd.
“Those hit are up and OK but absolutely no need for it.”
Full-back Digne joined Villa from Everton two weeks ago after asking to leave.
“What has happened and some things that was said about me in the last month has made me very sad,” Digne wrote in a post on Instagram at the time.
“But I will not enter a war on words with anyone.”
Figures released on Friday showed arrests at matches across the top five English divisions are at their highest levels in years, with fan disorder “getting worse”, according to the UK’s football policing lead.
The latest data covers the first half of this campaign – which has seen the return of fans to capacity stadiums after a year of lockdowns and restrictions.
There have been more than 800 football-related arrests in the first six months of the season, alongside more than 750 reported incidents of disorder.
Police have arrested a supporter at Goodison Park for throwing a missile onto the pitch during today’s Premier League match against Aston Villa.
Everton security staff and Merseyside Police identified the supporter using CCTV footage.
Several objects were thrown towards the pitch following Aston Villa’s goal at the end of the first half, with one missile appearing to strike two opposition players.
Investigations in conjunction with the police are ongoing, and the Club will issue bans to any fans identified throwing objects.
James McFadden (Former Everton forward on BBC Radio 5 Live) said: “It’s disgusting to see things being thrown from the crowd, it’s a disgrace. It should never happen. There is no way a player should be hit by a bottle or objects thrown from the crowd.”
Sky Sports wrote: “Looking at a replay of the bottle hit, there’s a number of bottles – and a lighter – thrown at the Villa players during their celebration.
“What looks a full bottle of Lucozade hits Digne and Cash, before Buendia is struck by a bottle of water as he checks on the pair.”
Andy Reid (Ex-Republic of Ireland midfielder on BBC Radio 5 Live): “It just needs to be a lifetime ban for anybody caught doing it (throwing objects on to the pitch). It’s dangerous.
“If it’s a coin you could cause real damage. Or a full bottle with a lid on it, which they are not supposed to have in there anyway, you could really hurt someone.
“It has to be a lifetime ban for me for anybody doing that – not being allowed into any football ground ever again.”
BT Sport confirmed that police and security are working to find who were the perpetuators, and a strong penalty will be handed out to those caught.
Twitter users reacted as Everton fans throw bottles at Matty Cash and Lucas Digne after the Aston Villa opener…
@adambfc1: can’t really blame digne for leaving, he wanted to play for a big club rather than everton
@steviewatson01: Cash was antagonising the situation. It’s like the done thing nowadays with the players. I understand if you’ve personally been getting it from the crowd and give a bit back. Hopefully he’ll think twice next time. Not condoning what happened but he brought it on himself.
@GeorgeHogg93: I’ve heard some Everton fan threw something towards Villa players after they went 1-0 up. Always one drunken idiot, always. I’ll believe you when I see it. Anti-social behaviour has been creeping into stadiums frequently. It’s gotta stop. NOW. @premierleague @EFL #TheFA
@JBpaddock70: Everton in a complete mess. Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison both want out in the summer. Richarlison would go in Jan if he could. Fan base is relentlessly toxic which forces the board’s hand. Players now don’t want to sign there. Until the fans change, the club won’t
@GrahamScutzy: Digne getting abuse all game, a bottle thrown at him for moving club. He was forced out by Rafa, he commented on it saying he wanted to stay. Why abuse him? Strange bunch those Everton fans. Great to see them relegated!
@SufcLee: this absolutely disgraceful & i hope @premierleague, make sure @Everton & fans who threw it are dealt with in the severest possible way. there is no place for this
😏 The smirk after the stare down with the Everton fans… 🥶
— SPORF (@Sporf) January 22, 2022
@ThomPaddock: Everton fans have not helped themselves recently. Treatment of Rafa was one thing but throwing shit at former players. Such a sad bitter bunch
@ScouseSocialism: Reminder that in the derby, Everton fans also tried to hit Mo and Alisson with bottles, and threw a flare that came within inches of Joel Matip. They’ve always been scumbags and it’s time to start calling them out on it.
@ChrisShannahan: This is assault. As a lifelong Everton fan I want every single Everton supporter who is pictured laughing to be banned from Goodison as well as the person who threw the object. We don’t need you!
@Chig01: Why are Everton fans booing Digne? He sends them a message clearly stating he didn’t want to be felt had to leave. He felt forced out. The guy that sells him gets the boot 2 days later, & they are booing him? Fickle.
@JoshA1995_LFC: The funniest thing about the everton fans booing and throwing stuff at digne because he had the audacity to leave them for a team who are on the up is that their manager today left them to join 13th placed Newcastle in 1998
@iamivank: Gerrard smirking at the Everton fans, with a swagger in his walk is priceless. #EVEAST