A football fan has denied damaging a section of fencing and throwing it during a Boxing Day derby match.

Daniel Gosnold is accused of using or threatening unlawful violence and damaging or destroying property at Darlington FC’s Vanarama National League North festive clash at Spennymoor Town’s Brewery Field ground, on December 26 last year.

Four police officers were injured dealing with incidents of unrest in the crowd at the derby fixture, which ended in a 1-1 draw.

Following inquiries into events that marred the eagerly-awaited clash, the defendant, who has been on bail since his arrest, was charged with causing an affray and criminal damage.

Read more: Crowd trouble at Spennymoor vs Darlington match sparks police appeal

Appearing at a Durham Crown Court plea hearing, the 42-year-old former doorman, of Park Crescent, Darlington, denied both charges.

Asked by Judge James Adkin what his defence was to the allegations, Chris Morrison, for Mr Gosnold, said his client was at the game with two other people, one a practising solicitor, but he denied being responsible for damaging the fencing and throwing it during the match.

Mr Morrison said an assault on his client about four to five years ago brought about an end to the defendant’s “doorman’s days”.

He said a repercussion of the injury Mr Gosnold suffered in that assault was loss of the use of part of his left arm.

Judge James Adkin said the allegations against Mr Gosnold would have to be contested at trial.

Daniel Penman, prosecuting, said one of the Crown’s witnesses needed to give evidence at the trial is the police officer who conducted the identification of the defendant.

Read more: Football fans warned by Darlington FC after violent Boxing Day clash

Adjourning for trial at the court in February, Judge Adkin asked Mr Morrison if his client is subject to any bail condition forbidding him from attending football matches.

Mr Morrison said: “He doesn’t have a banning order or a bail condition.

“He wasn’t charged with this matter until nine months after the incident and there’s been no suggestion of any misbehaviour.”

Judge Adkin said in that case he would make it a condition of the defendant’s bail that he is not permitted to attend association football matches until the trial, on February 27.

Read next:

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                Spennymoor FC release statement following trouble at Darlington match

                Spennymoor Town v Darlington will be all-ticket

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