Blackpool fan tragically passes away following assault outside The Manchester pub

Tributes from friends and fellow Blackpool supporters are flooding in.

Danny Jones Danny Jones - 6th March 2023

A Blackpool fan has sadly passed away following a matchday assault outside a pub this weekend.

Now identified as Tony ‘Toe’ Johnson, the Seasider was left fighting for his life after he was attacked outside The Manchester pub in Blackpool on Saturday.

The incident is said to have occurred around 7pm, according to Lancs Live, after 15 supporters were reported to have begun scrapping around the town centre as police were already carrying out derby day patrols for Blackpool’s match against Burnley.

Johnson, aged in his 50s, suffered serious head injuries and received CPR on the scene before being rushed to hospital where ultimately succumbed to his injuries.

A 33-year-old man is said to have been arrested following the interaction and remains in custody; there is currently no suggestion he targeted specifically. His death was confirmed by close friend George Robinson on social media in the early hours on Monday morning, 6 March.


The club issued a statement on Sunday following the assault and the news that Johnson was left in critical condition. Blackpool have since issued an update after the lifelong fan was confirmed as dead, informing Seasiders that there will be an “open book of condolence from 4pm in the Moretti Lounge today, with supporters also invited to lay flowers at the Mortensen Statue”.

They went on to assure that they are working with “Lancashire Police as they continue their investigation and are not able to make any further comment at this stage.”


The tragic news has hit the Seasider supporters and English football at large as a stark reminder that football fan violence is still as present as ever.

Local Sunday league team Armfield FC are one of many sharing tributes to the well-known Tangerine, with so many sharing the sentiment that “no one should go to a football match and never come home under any circumstances”.

Fans on both sides of the Lancashire Derby are deeply disappointed and saddened by the news.

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Tony was hailed as a “true Mucker” and a “proper Blackpool bloke” who will be sadly missed by all. Our thoughts go out to his loved ones.


While his passing marks yet another dark day for football, it has sparked fresh appeals to further combat the prevailing culture of hooliganism in sport.

Rest in peace.

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