Football referee who suffered a broken jaw and broken ribs in a shocking post-match attack reveals he bears no ill will against the boxer believed to be responsible
- Referee Khodr Yaghi attacked after the match
- Adam Abdullah, 25, charged over incident
- Yaghi left with a broken jaw and broken ribs
A football referee has broken his silence after the father-of-four suffered broken ribs and a broken jaw following a shocking attack on the pitch.
Khodr Yaghi, 45, was attacked just after the full-time whistle was blown at an amateur football match at Padstow Park, south-west Sydney, on May 28.
Adam Abdallah, 25, was charged with wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and arguing on Sunday night after footage of the incident went viral.
Abdallah, an amateur boxer, is said to have pushed the referee to the ground before taking a series of punches and kicks to the head.
The father of four lost several teeth and was left with a broken jaw and ribs.
Remarkably, Mr Yaghi has forgiven his alleged attacker and hopes the incident will improve the way referees across Australia are treated in the future.
“To be honest, I have nothing against him. I just want to move on… and I wish him all the best and that he learns from that too,” he said 9News.
“If I knew from day one that I’m going to be victimized to change that game, I’ll always raise my hand and take it.”
Referee Khodr Yaghi, 45, was assaulted after the full-time whistle blew at an amateur football match at Padstow Park, Sydney’s southwest, on May 28.
He said up to 13,000 umpires have been similarly attacked in the past five months, with Bankstown Football Association officials testing body cameras.
The referee will need at least nine months to recover from his injuries after undergoing surgery at Liverpool Hospital last week.
Shocking new allegations surrounding the incident came to light when Abdallah appeared in Bankstown court via video link on Monday.
The court heard that Abdallah allegedly taunted officials from the sidelines before jumping over the fence to confront Mr Yaghi after the full-time whistle was blown.
Police allege that Abdallah “stood in a boxing stance” and punched Mr. Yaghi before striking him repeatedly on the head with his fist and foot.
The court was also told that Mr. Yaghi used a metal sideline flag to defend himself during the incident, injuring Abdallah.
Adam Abdallah, 25, was charged with wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and arguing on Sunday night after footage of the incident went viral
Police allege Abdallah ‘stood in a boxing stance’ and punched Mr Yaghi before striking him repeatedly on the head with his fist and foot
Referee and father of four, Khodr Yaghi, underwent jaw surgery at Liverpool Hospital
The suspect hung his head when a magistrate refused to release him on bail on Monday because his five-month-pregnant wife held back tears.
Defense attorney Talal Krayem told the court his client had no history of violence and would be under strict bail conditions.
Aussies were quick to condemn the violent clash, which followed the Greenacre Eagles and Padstow Hornets game, after the footage spread on social media.
Steve Kamper, a former president of the Sydney Olympic Football Club, said it was one of the “hardest attacks” he had seen at any sporting event at any level.
“This was a disgusting and cowardly attack. It goes without saying that this kind of behavior is totally unacceptable,” he said in a statement.
Abdallah will return to court in June.
Adam Abdallah’s wife, the pregnant woman (right), broke down in court on Monday after the amateur boxer was denied bail