Thousands of Celtic fans invaded the Brentford pitch after their pre-season friendly.

The match at Griffin Park on Saturday, July 20, was expected to be fairly quiet, but 6,500 Celtic fans turned up, heavily outnumbering the 2,000 home fans.

During the match, which saw Celtic triumph 2-1 over the Bees, five supporters were removed from the stadium after they ran on to the pitch during play and stalled the game.

One exited Celtic fan who dashed on to the pitch was even allowed to take a goal kick from his side’s end.

Billy Grant, who has worked for fan website Beesotted for the past 22 years, and captured a video of the pitch invasion, said some Brentford fans were intimidated by the rowdiness of the crowd.

He said: “I think the Celtic fans came down for a party basically. For Brentford fans it was a little bit overwhelming.

“A lot of them got a little bit carried away and started running on the pitch which spoilt the day to a little degree.”

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He estimated 1,000 Celtic fans charged on to the pitch and set off flares which they had sneaked past security.

No damage was caused to the pitch or the goalposts, but CCTV images have been passed to the authorities and the culprits are now being identified.

Mark Devlin, Brentford FC chief executive, said: “The noise generated by the Celtic supporters was unlike any I have seen at a pre-season game.

“It was very disappointing, therefore, that the afternoon ended with a pitch invasion despite a very high police presence inside the ground.

“The use of flares and smoke bombs at football matches in England is dangerous and of growing concern to the football authorities.

“It was abundantly clear that some did get through and this will be discussed at the usual post-match briefing.”

He apologised to people living nearby who may have suffered as a result of Saturday’s antisocial behaviour which saw some Celtic fans arrive at 7am to start drinking.

Mr Devlin said: “We were of the understanding that there would have been a police presence in the area of Griffin Park from early on Saturday morning, especially as some pubs were open earlier than normal.”

Following the disturbance the club will hold a meeting with its safety group which includes Hounslow Council and the Metropolitan Police.