TFC fan burned, not bitter

BRETT CLARKSON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:34 AM ET

A Toronto FC fan who suffered a second-degree burn when a lit flare landed on her leg called the incident "pretty stupid" but vowed it won't deter her from going to future soccer games at BMO Field.

"I'm not going to let a couple people out of 20,000 ruin the whole experience," said Adrienne Coughlan, 26, of Ajax. "The experience of being at a game is amazing. I would totally go back. I want to go back to another game."

Midway through the second half of Wednesday's match against Chivas USA, two lit flares were thrown from section 110 high above the sellout crowd of 19,915.

Coughlan, who was standing among other fans in section 114 behind the south-end goal, looked up to see a flash of red flame hurtling down toward her. "I just thought there's no way that's going to hit me," Coughlan said.

But it did, landing on her left thigh. The flare burned a hole through her jeans and left a 21/2 cm burn on her leg. She received first-aid at BMO and didn't require hospitalization.

The second torch landed on the field's artificial turf, causing $2,000 in damage, Toronto Police said.

Phone calls to Toronto FC's media relations weren't returned by last night.

According to police, two people tried to flee but were quickly nabbed by officers and security guards after fans pointed them out.

Two teens were slapped with four charges each and held overnight in custody before appearing in bail court yesterday morning.

Coughlan, who has been to several TFC matches over the years, was standing five rows up from the field in the stadium's most lively section, where red-clad TFC fans sing, chant, and wave flags and banners.

The fans, including Coughlan, were jubilant because TFC was holding its 1-0 lead against the previously undefeated Los Angeles-based Chivas USA. "We were just cheering, everybody was having a good time," she said.

Det.-Sgt. Egidio Roseto of Toronto Police 14 Division said although there have been several incidents in recent years involving fans at BMO, the majority of crowds are well-behaved.

Andjelo Franjic, 18, and a 17-year-old, both of Stoney Creek, are each charged with possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, assault with a weapon, assault causing bodily harm, and mischief under $5,000.


Videos

Photos