Bouncers at a Manchester nightclub have been sacked after an 18-year-old rugby player suffered a serious head injury following an “appalling” assault.
Joe Sharratt, an academy player with St Helens rugby league club, is said to be in a stable condition following the incident outside the Factory 251 club on Princess Street.
The assault took place in the early hours of Sunday and police are urging any witnesses, or anyone with video of the attack, to come forward.
Video on social media shows one man motionless on the floor after being pushed over by a bouncer as other security staff repeatedly punch another man.
Sky News could not immediately confirm which of the men is Mr Sharratt.
The nightclub said it was “totally appalled” by the incident and it had terminated the contract of the third-party company which provides its bouncers.
Its Twitter statement said: “Factory is committed to providing a safe and enjoyable environment for all its customers and we will simply not tolerate this sort of behaviour from anyone directly or indirectly employed by us, whatever the circumstances”.
The security contractor, Professional Security, said it was “appalled by the behaviour of the door supervisors shown in the footage”.
“We can confirm that Professional Security has terminated the contracts of all of the security personnel involved in this incident,” the firm said in statement.
St Helens rugby club said Mr Sharratt has “impeccable character and is an upstanding member of our Academy system”.
It added: “He represented Lancashire Schoolboys against Australian Schoolboys with distinction on Saturday and was hoping to represent England next weekend.
“He is a top academic achiever with a very bright future ahead of him alongside his rugby league prowess.
“Our welfare team are now in contact with Joe’s family and we will offer any assistance we can at this distressing time.”
:: Anyone with information should contact police on 0161 856 3221 quoting reference number 396 of 02/12/18 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111