'Critical' Watford Fan Fund Hits £22,500
11 March 2015, 06:11
An appeal to raise money for a Hertfordshire father of two beaten up by football hooligans has raised nearly £23,000.
Nick Cruwys, a Watford supporter, was set upon by a gang following a Championship clash between between Watford and Wolves on Saturday.
Mr Cruwys, 44, had been with friends walking from Wolverhampton's Molineux Stadium to the city's train station when he was attacked around 5pm.
Police say that Mr Cruwys, a milkman from Hemel Hempstead, and his friends were outnumbered and he suffered a head injury which has left him fighting for his life in hospital.
Disgusted by the attack, Wolves fan Ollie Floyd started an online appeal on GoFundMe to support Mr Cruwys' recovery and, in its first day, it has raised more than £22,500 and been shared more than 8,800 times.
Mr Floyd, also from Hemel Hempstead, said he had been at the game with his father and brother and was "absolutely horrified" when he heard what had happened to Mr Cruwys.
He told Sky News: "Obviously being such a horrific incident, my brother and I were deep in discussion about what had happened.
"Also, on social media, there was a lot of talk surrounding the incident, the majority being very negative towards Wolverhampton and its people.
"Whilst this view may be justified following such a horrific event, this upset me.
"It was such a small minority that would ever commit such a horrible crime and people were not able to look beyond this.
"It was at this point that, together with another Twitter user, that I decided I would try and do something about it."
Mr Floyd says that he wanted to prove that the football community could be positive rather than dominated by the behaviour of those who had carried out the attack.
He added: "Perhaps more importantly, I wanted to restore Nick's faith in the football community and provide him with something of a gift from the football community."
Meanwhile, both clubs encouraged anyone with information about the assault to come forward.
Wolves' chief executive Jez Moxey, said the club would do whatever it could to help police "get to the bottom of this horrendous incident".
He added: "We are deeply saddened to hear of this incident and our thoughts go out to the supporter concerned and his family.
"As a club we deplore any violence in or around football matches, and we will work closely with the relevant authorities to help bring the perpetrator, or perpetrators, to justice."
In a statement, Watford said: "The thoughts of everyone associated with Watford FC are with a Hornets' supporter...who is now critically ill after an unprovoked post-match attack."