A 21-year-old Roma fan accused of taking part in a joint attack on Liverpool fan Sean Cox is giving evidence at his trial before Preston Crown Court.
Filippo Lombardi is accused of using a belt to lash out at Mr. Cox, who had travelled from Dunboyne, Co. Meath for a Champions League game.
The first witness called this morning was the Liverpool fan whose video footage of the alleged incident has been shown throughout this trial.
The clip doesn’t show how Sean Cox ended up on the ground, but he said he saw someone lash out with a belt.
The man accused of doing that is 21-year-old Roma fan Filippo Lombardi, who took the stand after the prosecution closed its case.
En route to the game, he said he wrapped his belt around his hand because he felt the situation near the stadium could be dangerous.
He described an aggressive man with a white scarf saying something like “fight” and he lashed out with his belt to warn him off.
He claims it was only after he did so that he noticed Sean Cox lying on the ground. He said he didn’t know he ended up there.
It is the prosecution’s case that another man punched the 53 year-old but Mr. Lombardi said he didn’t see that and didn’t know this man.
He also insisted he didn’t set out looking for trouble that night.