Ollie Watkins: Police look into celebrations in Brentford-Aston Villa game

The Metropolitan Police will speak to Aston Villa and Brentford about the events surrounding Ollie Watkins’ celebration in Sunday’s game.

Villa striker Watkins stood in the net pointing at a Brentford supporter after scoring a decisive late goal in the 2-1 Premier League victory against his former club.

He said later that the fan verbally abused him throughout the game.

“We are aware of the claims,” a police spokesperson said.

“Officers will be making contact with officials at Aston Villa and Brentford to find out further details.”

Watkins, who joined Villa from Brentford in 2020, has scored 14 goals this season. Villa are third in the Premier League and have qualified for the Europa Conference League last 16.

The goal celebration sparked a goalmouth melee between the players, and there were more scuffles in the closing moments of the game at the Brentford Community Stadium.

“There was one individual who had been giving me abuse all game, from the first corner. He’d been on to me all game saying personal stuff,” said Watkins.

Ollie Watkins was annoyed by the abuse he received from a fan during the game

“I wasn’t racially abused, but he was saying a lot of stuff. If it happens once it’s fine, but two, three, four times – he kept going on to me. I thought ‘I’m going to get him back’.

“It was aimed at him, not anyone else at the stadium, I have a lot of respect for the club, the people here, the owner, the manager. That’s what I said to him after, when I was walking off.”

A Villa statement read: “Aston Villa FC wants to express its support for Ollie Watkins and, with the utmost respect for the big majority of Brentford fans and for the club, we ask the authorities to investigate this incident to find this individual. Zero tolerance to abuse in football.”

Asked if he would do it again, Watkins told BBC Sport: “If he said those things to me again, I’d do it again.”

Former England striker Ian Wright said: “That fan has come to give him stick. Watkins has to be professional, do his stuff, score his goal. He didn’t say a word; he just looked at him. As a fan you can’t give it and [not take it back].”

Ex-England striker Alan Shearer said the celebration was Watkins’ “right of reply”.

Two players were sent off, another 10 were booked and both managers were shown a yellow card during the game.

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