After pigeon infestation at Stamford Bridge ... time for a recall

We look back at five brilliant moments of animal pitch invasions after witnessing several winged pests deciding to take in both the Chelsea and QPR games this weekend


He is back but this time he has friends. Everyone will remember seeing the Stamford Bridge pigeon in February but now it seems more than one of the little flying vermin likes to take in a Chelsea game at the weekend.


Multiple pigeons were seen enjoying the game against Sunderland this Sunday but it seems the infestation has spread.


Over at Loftus Road the feathered rats made themselves quite comfortable in White City as they took in the QPR v Wigan encounter. You can even see a cluster of the Columbidae scampering off post-haste when Stephane M’Bia gobbled up the ground and set Loic Remy up to score one of the goals of the season.


Animals on the pitch isn’t anything knew in football. Playing for my local team Churchend Rovers across at the Meadway Rec I can recall occasions when dogs, wasps, bees, mosquitos, seagulls, geese, swan and even a deer have decided to run across the pitch mid-fixture.


So I figured what better excuse then to have a look through the archives and bring to you five of the best moments when animals decided they wanted in on the action…


Black Lab evades Dean Kiely


There is an absolute litany of ‘dog runs onto football pitch’ videos from across the world including from Poland, Brazil, Chile … name a country and they probably have a video for it.


But the black lab at the York City vs Bristol Rovers game in 1994/95 is definitely the best of the bunch.


Mainly because of Dean Kiely’s valiant attempt at diving after the canine.


In the end all it wanted was a bag of chips.



Shankly the Anfield Cat


This little kitty cat did not give a crap. Absolutely magnificent moment when this moggy ran on to the pitch and mugged off Tottenham stopper Brad Friedel by loitering around his penalty area.


Eventually the feline got bored and wandered off.


Rehomed in an Animal Rescue Centre and affectionately named ‘Shankly’ made a break for it in February 2012 and is probably waiting for his next grand entrance on to the world stage.



Swiss player bites off more than he can chew


Loris Benito may become the first ever football player more famous for being attacked by an animal on the pitch then anything he does with a ball.


He was brave enough to jump on top of and do battle with this wild pine marten during FC Zurich’s tie with FC Thun last month; and got bitten as a result.


In the end perhaps the most famous pine marten in the world was carried off clinging to the finger of FC Zurich goalkeeper David da Costa.



What a cock


This Chicken was thrown onto the pitch in protest at the Venky’s ownership of the club. Dressed in a Blackburn flag he decided to hand around the area for a little while before Ali Al-Habsi and Yakubu convinced him this was not place for poultry.


On the plus side reports say sales of pet chickens in the Blackburn area have gone up tenfold since the Indian company took over at Ewood Park.



What a hoot


This owl is the undisputed king of animal pitch invaders.


Not a single person in the stadium knew how to deal with this avian creature when it entered the play in a Finland v Belgium international.


The owl in question is actually Bubi; mascot for the Finnish mens national team but on this day it seems he was bored of playing second fiddle to these overpaid loons in shorts.


That day was his day. He never returned and we can only assume is some sort of Eurasian-eagle-owl king somewhere in Lapland.


On another note the owl was voted the 2007 Helsinki Citizen of the Year.


Long live Bubi.


Just enjoy the video…



image: © Paolo Margari

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