A-Leagues statement following Saturday night’s Melbourne Derby pitch invasion

Football is the most inclusive sport.

It is for families and for law-abiding citizens who want to passionately support their team.

The events that unfolded at the Melbourne Derby last night, demonstrated that a small minority of people with criminal intent hide within our game.

They neither understand nor love our game.

What they do understand is how to use our game as a platform for their anti-social and illegal objectives.

This is a watershed moment for our game that demands a zero tolerance for the incidents that we witnessed last night and the kind of people that perpetrated them.

Our Clubs will work deliberately and exhaustively, hand-in hand with law enforcement agencies, and with Football Australia – as the game’s regulator – to ensure that our game can never again be used as camouflage for criminals.