Former West Ham United star Dimitri Payet is at the centre of a case in France where prosecutors are calling for a five-year ban for a Nice fan.

Payet is undeniably one of the best players to have graced West Ham.

But when he left West Ham in controversial fashion it sullied his name with Hammers supporters.

West Ham fans still take an interest in Payet’s career after he went AWOL back in 2017 to force a return to Marseille following 18 magical months in east London.

Photo by Rob Newell CameraSport via Getty Images

Payet has regularly courted controversy in France since his return to L’OM too.

He was criticised for refusing a pay cut when the Covid pandemic saw the Ligue 1 season scrapped back in 2020.

While players at West Ham and clubs across Europe agreed wage cuts and deferrals, Payet flat out refused – despite claiming he loves the club (Le Journal de l’île de la Réunion).

The ex West Ham playmaker’s reputation took another battering last season when he was accused of being ‘overweight’.

Photo by Jean Catuffe Getty Images

That was according to former Marseille goalkeeper Pascal Olmeta, who pulled no punches when it came to Payet’s physical fitness (Get French Football News).

Payet was criticised again earlier this year as he was accused of ‘playing dirty tricks’ over new Covid pay cut talks (GFFN).

The former West Ham star made headlines for all the wrong reasons again back in February as tensions boiled over in a fiery Marseille clash with PSG.

 

There were just seconds to go when Payet launched a poor flying kick into Marco Verratti’s torso.

OGC Nice v Olympique Marseille - Ligue 1
Photo by John Berry Getty Images

The match official presiding over PSG’s 2-0 win didn’t hesitate in showing Payet a red card, although the ex West Ham ace did check on his floored opponent – presumably in an effort to escape an inevitable red.

Payet made headlines again last month when he found himself at the centre of ugly scenes during Marseille’s match against Nice.

Payet was hit by a projectile thrown from the Nice crowd and angrily threw it back towards the Nice fans before doing the same with a second bottle.

That sparked pandemonium and a mass brawl as fans invaded the pitch and the match was abandoned.

The 2016 Hammer of the Year was also allegedly kicked by a Nice fan during the violent scenes.

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Payet speaks as Marseille head coach Jorge Sampaoli (C) is steered by a colleague during the ugly scenes between their side and Nice last month. Photo by VALERY HACHE AFP via Getty Images

And both Nice-Matin and Get French Football News report today that the prosecutor against the fan that kicked Payet during the trouble has called for a five-year stadium ban and six-month prison sentence to be handed to the 29-year-old man.

A final deliberation will take place on September 30, in a case which sees former West Ham hero Payet, the LFP, and the players’ union as plaintiffs.

In other news, Brazilian boost for West Ham as star man adds to shocking Leeds injury crisis.

And West Ham want star who impressed Moyes to buck trend and sign new deal.

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