Fans of Russian soccer team Dynamo Moscow fired paintball guns at the club’s players and staff during a recent practice, and now the team is fighting back to punish the hooligans.
Alan Gatragov, a midfielder for Dynamo Moscow, said a group of fans wearing camouflage fired rounds of paintballs at the players and staff of the Russian team, hitting him in the head with a paintball, the Associated Press reported.
Dynamo Moscow has regressed from last season, when it placed fourth in the Russian Premier League. Out of 16 teams, Dynamo Moscow is currently in 12th place for the 2012-2013 season, with four wins and eight losses. The AP pointed out that the team’s performance was apparently the motive for the paintball attack.
Russian news outlet RIA Novosti reported that the fans also threw fliers on the pitch threatening Dynamo Moscow players.
“If the club and the coaches can't motivate you, then believe us, we will do it. And our methods will be a little more serious,” the flier read, according to Metro.
Galtragov called the paintball attack “vile” in an interview with RIA Novosti.
“What should we do? Should each of us hire a personal bodyguard? I was hit in the back of the head when they shot at us, lots of players were hit,” he told the Russian news agency. “I didn't even realize what they were shooting with, perhaps paintballs, they were in camouflage and fled pretty quickly.”
The attack infuriated the leadership of Dynamo Moscow, who vowed to respond to the incident in the “toughest possible manner” under the law, Metro reported.
The paintball incident is not the first vandalism incident to hit the Moscow soccer team.
Graffiti was sprayed on walls near the team’s practice facility “warning the squad to stop dishonoring the club’s name,” according to Metro.