SHEFFIELD UNITED star Billy Sharp was left needing stitches after a vicious attack by a pitch invader during celebrations at the City Ground.
Brice Samba was the hero as Nottingham Forest reached the Championship play-off final at Wembley, saving three penalties in the shootout.
But the evening was totally soured by a disgraceful attack on Blades striker Sharp, 36, who was standing watching the celebrations.
Sky Sports captured a mindless yob run full speed at Sharp just seconds after the penalties, sending him crashing him to the floor with an apparent headbutt.
A club spokesperson confirmed to media that Sharp was left needing stitches after the disgusting incident.
Furious United manager Paul Heckingbottom said: “It’s assault. We’ve seen one of our players attacked.
“He’s shook up, bleeding, angry. It’ll be dealt with.”
Heckingbottom added: “We’re seeing things thrown on the pitch and things that are thrown on putting players’ health and safety in danger and nothing’s ever done about it.
“There will be something done about that. We’ve seen what’s happened, we know what’s happened. There’s a prison sentence there without a doubt.
“How can you come to a place of work minding your own business and be assaulted in that fashion?
“It’s just bang out of order and it’s everything that’s wrong. Too many times we hear people condemn it, but nothing’s done about it. We’re the ones that suffered.
“It’s upsetting for a lot of reasons – I don’t want to say too much more about it. He’ll be dealt with.”
Forest later put out a statement saying they are “appalled” at the treatment of Sharp, who played for the club on loan in the 2012-13 season.
It read: “Nottingham Forest Football Club are appalled to learn that our former player, Billy Sharp, was assaulted leaving the pitch after tonight’s match at The City Ground.
“The club will work with the authorities to locate the individual in order they are held to account for their actions, which will include a life ban from Nottingham Forest.
“The club would also like to apologise to Billy personally and to Sheffield United Football Club.”
Nottingham Forest reached the play-off final at Wembley with a 3-2 penalty shootout win after the Blades had sent the game all the way with a 2-1 win.