Soccer game

Man stabbed on field at Vancouver football game (VIDEO)

Editor’s note: This story contains descriptions and images of violence

A man was stabbed on a Vancouver soccer field in the middle of a game on Saturday after three other men chased him and knocked him onto the grass.

Video of the incident at Trillium East Field in Strathcona shows a man in a black hoodie and green shorts jogging across the field, followed by two men in black jackets.

“Come down from [expletive] throw, will you,” a player shouts at the men.

A fourth man, carrying a backpack, runs across the field on the other side and the first man runs away.

But the men catch him and knock him to the ground. One of the men kicks him as he lies on the ground, and another stabs him.

It is then that the referee of the match, dressed in a red jacket, sprints and pushes the aggressor away.

“It was like a football tackle… I’ve known this referee for years. He is such a good man, congratulations to him,” Shaheen Football Club manager Babak Shahbazi, who witnessed the incident, told the Daily Hive.

The man with the knife pointed it at the referee after being tackled, Shahbazi said, but the football manager told the group to leave and the striker apparently calmed down.

Shahbazi said the commotion started when a girl who was with the attackers started screaming. Attention shifted from the game to the disturbance, and the game came to a halt when the first man jumped over the fence.

“It didn’t seem like normal behavior from these kids,” he said. “Nobody stabs someone in front of 100 spectators while thinking normally.”

No one expected the incident to turn violent, Shahbazi said. When it happened, he ran to get a first aid kit from his car to help the victim.

“The poor guy was so distressed that he wouldn’t let us touch him,” Shahbazi told The Daily Hive.

He could not see any blood from the stab wound and tended to the cuts on the man’s face until paramedics arrived.

“It was the craziest thing I’ve seen in my life,” he said. “I was sad more than anything else… All these guys, big ones, all sportsmen. In front of all of us, this guy was stabbed and none of us could do anything.

Vancouver Police Department spokesman Sgt. Steve Addison said it is not known what sparked the violence and the incident is still under investigation. No arrests were made.

“It’s obviously a very concerning incident that happened in the middle of a football pitch,” Addison said.