FEBRUARY 1 2012 21:29h
At least 73 die in Egypt soccer stampede
Egyptian Health Ministry officials put the death toll from the melee at the Port Said stadium at 73, Bikyamasr.com and Voice of America reported.
Bikyamasr.com said ministry officials pegged the number of injured at 167.
Ahram Online reported the violence broke out after the Masry team defeated the Ahly team 3-1 in Egyptian Premier League action.
Medhat el-Esnawy, manager of Port Said's El-Amiry hospital, said in a television interview 11 deaths were recorded at his hospital at that point, 25 at two other hospitals and three at the soccer stadium, the online news site said.
"Some died of stampede and others died of suffocation," el-Esnawy said.
Ahly's players expressed fear for their safety in phone calls to the club's in-house TV station.
"The security forces left us, they did not protect us," veteran player Mohamed Abou-Treika was quoted as saying. "One fan has just died in the dressing room in front of me."
Midfielder Mohamed Barakat also said he saw corpses.
"There are no security forces or army personnel to protect us," he said. "It is our fault because we played that match. The authorities are afraid to cancel the league because they just care about money, they do not care about the lives of people."
Ahram said thousands of Masry fans stormed the field following the final whistle and chased Ahly players and support staff, who fled. The fans then clashed with al-Ahly's fans as the riot erupted.
The rampaging Masry fans threw rocks, fireworks and bottles at the Ahly players and fans, VOA said, adding television video showed a fire in the stadium.
The incident prompted the cancellation of Zamalek's league game against Ismaily in Cairo at halftime, Ahram Online said.
CAIRO, Feb. 1 (UPI) -- A stampede by thousands of soccer fans after a match in Egypt Wednesday left at least 73 people dead and scores more injured, officials said.