1860 Munich relegated to German third tier, sparking ugly scenes
Former Bundesliga champions 1860 Munich were relegated from Germany's second tier on Tuesday in a game held up for 15 minutes toward the end because of violence among angry fans.
1860 lost the second leg of their relegation/promotion playoff 2-0 at home to Bavarian rivals Jahn Regensburg, who finished third in the third division and secured second-tier football with a 3-1 aggregate win.
Jahn gained promotion at the first attempt, a season after their promotion from the fourth tier.
Kolja Pusch and Marc Lais scored in the first half for Jahn, but the game was overshadowed by scenes that unfolded 10 minutes before full-time, when 1860 fans began throwing objects, including seats, onto the pitch.
Riot police lined up to prevent the situation escalating, and Munich police said on Twitter that 10 officers had suffered minor injuries.
"We're fed up," the home side's fans chanted. Play was suspended for some 15 minutes, although more objects were thrown onto the pitch after it resumed.
1860, who won the Bundesliga in 1966 and had played in the top flight as recently as 2004, returned to the third level for the first time in 24 years.
The club later announced that general manager Ian Ayre, a former Liverpool chief executive, had tendered his resignation before the game. Club president Peter Cassalette resigned after the match.
1860 Munich are backed by Jordanian investor Hasan Abdullah Ismaik, who hired former Porto coach Vitor Pereira last December and promised to lead the side to the top levels of European football.
Only Stuttgart and Hannover, who both secured returns to the Bundesliga, had second division squads that cost more than 1860's.
"Unfortunately it wasn't enough to hit the targets. It pains me immensely that the project failed," said Pereira, who thanked co-workers, players and journalists at the postgame news conference. "My conscience is clear that I did all I could."
1860's under-21, under-19, under-17 and under-16 teams were also relegated this season.