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Soccer fans set off flares in Melbourne’s CBD last night

MML

LATEST: Police have slammed soccer fans who let off flares at last night’s friendly between Australia and Greece as ‘deplorable’.

Acting Assistant Commissioner Russell Barrett told Neil Mitchell there were as many as 30 flares let off outside the venue as hundreds of soccer fans gathered at Etihad Stadium.

He said it was lucky that there were no reported injuries.

‘To me success will finally occur when somebody lights a flare in a game outside and the crowd turn and point to that person out to police, and say please prosecute him,’ he said.

‘Because he or she is impacting on the reputation of our sport.’

Click PLAY to hear the Acting Commissioner react to last night’s violent scenes

One member of the group was seen throwing a flare into the path of an oncoming bus.

Those responsible could face five year bans.

Additional flares were later set off inside the stadium after Greece’s first goal was scored.

Police have confirmed five people were evicted during the match and another man was arrested after being refused entry and hindering officers.

Investigations continue into finding those responsible for lighting the flares.

In a statement Football Federation Australia says it’s ‘disappointed’ over the ‘anti-social’ behaviour and will work with Police to identify the offenders and impose mandatory five year bans.

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