Man jailed for 16 weeks over Kirkland attack

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Oct 23 2012 05:20 PM | Updated as of Oct 24 2012 01:20 AM

LONDON - A 21-year-old man was jailed for 16 weeks on Monday after admitting an attack on England goalkeeper Chris Kirkland during a televised game in the second-tier English Championship.

Aaron Cawley, from Cheltenham in southwest England, pleaded guilty to assault and invading the pitch during Sheffield Wednesday's 1-1 draw at home to Leeds United on Friday night.

Cawley appeared before magistrates in Sheffield, northern England, having been arrested for running onto the pitch at Hillsborough and shoving Kirkland in the face after Leeds scored a 76th-minute equaliser.

He then ran back into the crowd, but was detained by police on Sunday.

Cawley, who had previously breached a number of football banning orders in the past, was also ordered to pay £85 ($136, 104 euros) costs.

In a victim impact statement read to the court, Kirkland said: "I feel shocked, upset and angry. I think the man is a thug and should be caught and put in jail. Anyone who supports what he's done is just as bad."

Kirkland, 31, has previously played for clubs including Liverpool and Wigan Athletic. He joined Wednesday from Wigan earlier this year.

He made one appearance for England as a substitute in a friendly against Greece in August 2006.

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