A smoking can of tear gas caused Saturday's La Liga match between Villarreal and Celta Vigo to be temporarily suspended. Players complained of eye irritation and fans evacuated the stands while waiting for the smoke to clear in a scary situation at Villarreal's El Madrigal.
The tear gas proved to be far more potent than smoke bombs and flares occasionally seen at stadiums or thrown onto the pitch by the rare law-breaking fan. Villarreal president Fernando Roig said after the match that it was a weapon similar to what the police use.
TV cameras could not spot the fan who fired the tear gas and police said after the match that they are still looking for the culprit.
Villarreal pres Roig "Someone launched [tear gas can] & ran from the ground. Police are trying to find out who it was."— Dermot Corrigan (@dermotmcorrigan) February 15, 2014
Roig condemned the action of the fan and apologized for the incident, while also noting that it came from the stadium's quietest section so it was unlikely the work of some ultras.
The suspension of the match came in the 87th minute with Celta leading 1-0. It resumed 20 minutes later, with far fewer fans, and Celta added another goal to win 2-0 and keep Villarreal in fifth place.