Solicitor takes potshot at Newcastle as fan banned for pitch invasion at Sunderland vs Celtic

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A Sunderland AFC fan ran onto the pitch during the recent Celtic friendly game to win a £100 bet.

Andrew Foster headed towards the Celtic end of the ground in the 77th minute of the game to wave a flag, Sunderland Magistrates’ Court heard.

“The incident came to the attention of police when a steward presented Mr Foster to an officer who was on patrol inside the ground,” said Glenda Beck, prosecuting.

“Foster admitted to the officer what he had done, saying he did it to win a £100 bet.

“He said he knew it was an offence.”

Foster, 20, of Beacon Court, Gateshead, admitted encroaching onto the playing area at a designated football match on July 29.

Jason Smith, defending, said: “Mr Foster was down on his luck, not receiving any benefits.

“He literally had no money.

“It was a stupid thing to do, but there was no disorder or violence.

“The game continued, so it’s unlikely the players even noticed what had happened.

“The club has already banned him, I suppose he could go to a Newcastle match but that would be even less attractive than going to watch Sunderland.

“He has since shaved his head to win another £100, that’s how desperate he is.”

Foster told the bench the bet had not been paid in cash, but £100 had been ‘knocked off’ a debt he owed.

He added: “My friends told me I would just get thrown out, they didn’t tell me I would be arrested.”

The bench sentenced Foster to a conditional discharge of 12 months, and ordered him to pay £105 costs.

He was banned from designated football matches in England and Wales for three years.

Bench chairman John Fletcher told Foster: “You are a nuisance, and we are fed up with nuisances.

“Your friends are idiots.”