Defender Patrice Evra has left Marseille by mutual consent and been banned from Uefa competition for the rest of the season for kicking one of his own supporters before a match.
The ex-Manchester United full-back is banned until June 2018 and would have missed Marseille’s two group games and the knockout stage if they progressed.
He was fined 10,000 euros (£8,829).
Evra, 36, aimed a kick at a fan next to the pitch before a Europa League game with Vitoria Guimaraes on 2 November.
The France left-back joined Marseille from Juventus in January 2017 on an 18-month contract.
“By mutual agreement, Marseille and Evra have decided to put an end to their partnership,” said a club statement. “The player’s contract is officially terminated with immediate effect.”
French newspaper L’Equipe reported that Marseille supporters had been jeering Evra for about half an hour while the players prepared for the game with Vitoria Guimaraes, which the Ligue 1 side lost 1-0.
The player had gone over to the fans to talk to them, but the situation escalated.
Evra, who was named as a substitute for the game, was dismissed before kick-off so Marseille were able to begin the match with 11 players.
What has been Marseille’s reaction?
Marseille president Jacques-Henri Eyraud in a statement on the club’s website:
Today there is great sadness at the club, above all for Patrice Evra, who well understands the consequences of his actions and is no longer able to undertake his passion at Olympic Marseille, and for the Olympic Marseille supporters, who have been stigmatised by the irresponsible behaviour of a handful of fans.
Despite this incident, we are determined more than ever to demonstrate on and off the field that we are driven by the highest individual and collective standards.
How it happened
- Named as a substitute, Evra begins warming up with his team-mates before the game
- The former Manchester United left-back appears to be the target of songs and abuse from the crowd for about 30 minutes
- Evra approaches the Marseille fans, about 500 of whom had travelled to Guimaraes
- He volleys a ball towards the crowd, but some of his team-mates come over and look to calm the defender down
- Evra climbs over the billboards and looks to confront spectators who have come towards the front of the stand
- The 36-year-old returns to the pitch, but a group of fans approach the billboards and Evra appears to kick one of them
- Evra is led away to the substitutes’ bench, but is sent off by the referee and watches the game from the stands