A football hooligan who knocked out a rival supporter’s two front teeth on a Doncaster train station platform has avoided prison.
Paul Whitehead, aged 41, of Hillcrest Avenue, Bradford, was handed a three-year football banning order and ordered to pay £2,400 for dental surgery for his victim, an off-duty train staff member.
Sheffield Crown Court heard how Whitehead had been drinking heavily throughout the day on April 3 when he travelled to watch Bradford City away at Doncaster Rovers.
David Wain, prosecuting, told the court that Whitehead had arrived by coach but was returning to Bradford by train.
Mr Wain said: “Boarding the train got very rowdy and an off-duty staff member, who was wearing his Doncaster shirt, got off to try and defuse the situation.”
The court heard Whitehead, who was trying to board the train, got aggressive and swore at the victim, saying: “Who do you think you are? I’ll nut you.”
Mr Wain said the single head butt knocked the complainant’s teeth out.
Robert Sandford, defending, said former soldier Whitehead had struggled to control his temper after leaving the army.
He said: “He takes full responsibility for his actions.
“This is a man who, after leaving the forces, has struggled with drink but has turned his life around with a long spell without a court appearance.”
Mr Recorder Keith Miller, sentencing, also gave Whitehead a 12 month suspended prison sentence and 120 hours of unpaid work.
Supt John Conaghan said: “This was a serious and unprovoked attack on an innocent man and this is reflected in the sentence of the court.
“This type of drunken loutish behaviour by a minority of football fans is completely unacceptable.”