Brighton & Hove Albion have apologized to rivals Crystal Palace for the excrement that was smeared in the visitors' dressing room before the second leg of their Championship playoff semifinal. Despite the welcoming gift left by a mystery poo smearer, Crystal Palace went on to win the match 2-0 to advance to next week's final against Watford.
From the Guardian:
An angry Ian Holloway told his opposite number Gus Poyet what Palace had found as they shook hands on the touchline after the teams had emerged from the tunnel.
Poyet was apparently so disgusted to learn of the incident that he sent an email to staff demanding that the culprit be found and sacked. He and his coaching team have since been suspended by the club, apparently partly because the hierarchy were annoyed by aspects of Poyet's emailed complaint. It is not suggested that any of the trio were involved in the dressing-room incident.
Brighton, who have confirmed no players were involved, insist security will be tightened at the Amex.
According to The Sun, Poyet's email read:
“When Crystal Palace players and staff arrived to the Amex and went into their dressing room, they found themselves in a very uncomfortable situation.
“For some reason, someone had access to the away dressing room and done something terrible, trying to upset everyone related to Palace. To say it in clear English, someone had a ‘poo’ all outside the toilets, over and around the toilets.
“I am angry that someone within this club could endanger our good reputation and stoop so low. I would like someone to accept responsibility and resign.”
But since the mystery of the poop smeared in the visitors' dressing room wasn't enough to hold Poyet's focus, he also decided to criticize Brighton's marketing team for handing out 28,000 paper clappers to fans in the stadium. “Would someone like to admit it was their idea to hand out stupid pieces of noise-making paper?" he wrote, adding: "Whoever you are, you let the club down very badly."
So, just to be clear, smearing feces in an opponent's dressing room is only slightly worse than 28,000 paper clappers.
In an email to Brighton's season ticket holders, the club's chief executive Paul Barber confirmed that "We apologised to Crystal Palace as soon as the vandalism in their dressing room was discovered, and again more formally a few days after the match. As a result of what happened, please rest assured we have reviewed our internal procedures to guard against this ever happening again."
It's unclear what they plan to do to guard against it, though. Walls resistent to fecal matter? Cops in riot gear stationed near the dressing room toilets? A strictly enforced no No. 2 policy within the stadium?
The local police, meanwhile, are investigating the incident.