Date: 17th November 2006 at 8:42pm
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Death threats have been to Reading players, Stephen Hunt and Ibrahima Sonko, after the pair were involved in collisions with Chelsea goalkeepers, Petr Cech and Carlo Cudicini, in Reading`s home loss back in October.

Stephen Hunt was involved with a collision with Petr Cech within the first minute of the fixture between the Royals and Chelsea. Cech is not expected to play for Chelsea till the start of next season after suffering a fractured skull.

Ibrahima Sonko crashed into substitute keeper Carlo Cudicini later in the game leading to the Italian also being stretchered off the pitch.

Jose Mourinho called for action to be taken against Hunt, for a challenge that he called “a disgrace” he added, ‘He is lucky to still be alive.’

However the FA decided there would be no further action taken for either of the Reading players.

Police are now investigating a series of letters sent to the Reading club training ground in Arborfield, a spokesperson from Thames Valley Police said: ‘The club is helping us with inquiries and the matter is being investigated.’

However a spokesperson on behalf of Chelsea football club was quick to state:

‘There is nothing to suggest these threats came from genuine Chelsea fans.

“Naturally, we condemn any threats of this nature and we will assist the police fully if – and we stress if – there is any evidence linking these threats to any of our supporters.”

The Reading Chronicle reported that one letter said: ‘We are going to kill you for what you did to our players.’

The first letter was not taken seriously by Reading players, it was pinned up on the door in the dressing room of the training ground. But when further letters arrived the threat was treated more seriously at the club and the police were called upon to open investigations.

Sengalese defender, Sonko, refused to comment on the matter and Stephen Hunt only had this to say:

“The club is dealing with all my letters and I don’t want to say any more.’

In typical fashion, Reading boss Steve Coppell talked down the death threats:

‘We wanted to keep it quiet, and didn’t make an issue of it. We went through the proper channels and hoped it would die a death. To regurgitate it now is of no benefit to anybody.

‘I don’t think it’s for public consumption. It’s something different for the media to report but it serves no purpose to anybody else.’

 

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