A BOLTON Wanderers fan was knocked unconscious when football hooligans threw advertising boards on to supporters during the Wigan Athletic match.

The incident happened in the Bolton section shortly after kick off at Saturday's game at the JJB Stadium.

Several fans were injured and one needed stitches after being hit by the hoarding.

The club is now appealing for Wanderers fans to come forward with information so the culprits can be dealt with by police.

Bolton fan Alan Houghton, from Bradshaw, was grazed by the board but said at least two other fans suffered cuts to the head.

Mr Houghton, aged 56, who goes to many of Bolton’s away games said he thought the behaviour of some fans had got worse in recent years.

He added: “Someone could have been really badly hurt. I am presuming it was people who had had too much to drink but that sort of behaviour has no place in football.

“I just hope someone will come forward and tell police who was responsible. I don’t know if there is any CCTV but I’d like to think the police will be able to catch these people and will be banned from future matches. They are obviously not real fans.”

Wanderers fan liaison officer, Tony Kelly saw the incident from the commentary box.

He said: "There is no place for mindless thugs like this in football. There were young children and families sitting in the stand and someone could have been seriously injured.

“I have had a number of phone calls already about this incident. I have heard of at least four or five fans getting injured and a close friend of mine was actually knocked unconscious.

“We know who some of the perpetrators are and it is now just a case of getting enough evidence to bring charges so we really need people to come forward.”

The club is liaising with the police.

Anyone with any information should contact either Bolton Wanderers, the police or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.