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Fireworks stop French Ligue 1 match

AAP logoAAP 3/12/2016

The French Ligue 1 game between Metz and Lyon at Stade Saint-Symphorien was abandoned after fireworks exploded in the first half near visiting goalkeeper Anthony Lopes who was taken to hospital.

The first device landed in the six-yard box after Gauthier Hein gave hosts Metz a 1-0 lead in the 28th minute.

Lopes felt the impact of the first explosion and fell to the turf.

Staff and doctors had gathered round the floored keeper when another firecracker landed by them and exploded.

Referee Lionel Jaffredo told both teams to return to the dressing room with around half an hour gone, and though Lyon's official Twitter account said the match would resume, it was later called off after a delay of nearly an hour.

Lopes, the 26-year-old Portugal international who was born in France and came through the ranks at Lyon, was taken to a hospital to undergo tests, according to the club.

Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas said on their Twitter account: "It's very serious, these firecrackers have injured our keeper Anthony Lopes, the doctor also."

Lopes' teammate Maxwel Cornet added: "We were worried about Antho, we hope everything will be fine for him."

Lopes has won two senior Portugal caps and was part of his country's victorious Euro 2016 squad, although he did not play in the tournament.

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