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With pitch invasions and thrown nails, Eternal Derby 'felt like the bombardment of Iraq'

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There are a few things you can count on every time Panathinkaikos and Olympiacos meet: flares, intensity and something you have never seen before.

The Eternal Derby is one of the most incredible rivalries in all of world sports, and it lived up to its billing and then some over the weekend. The "then some" is for the part where it became downright dangerous and frightening.

It started innocently, and typically, enough -- with flares. Lots of flares.

That is a typical Eternal Derby. We're in the safe zone.

But then there were pitch invasions and the fans started throwing the flares at the players. As always, visiting fans are not allowed at the Eternal Derby for safety concerns -- good idea -- so this is all Panathinaikos. You can guess which team they targeted.

Oh, and it was all before the match even started.


And yet after that happened, the Olympiacos had to go back out on the pitch and play a match. Exactly who told them that was a good idea was probably wrong seeing as they got pelted with more flares during the match.

But it wasn't just flares. According to Olympiacos president Vengelis Marinakis, fans threw nails, rocks and bottles at the players, too.

Let's let him sum up the match for you:

What we saw today, I had never imagined. I had never foreseen that, the moment the team stepped into the pitch, there would be a pitch invasion. And the objects, what can I say? Nails, rocks, bottles ... this felt like the bombardment of Iraq.

That was the scene at a soccer match.

Eternal Derby, you are terrifying.