Melbourne Victory has been given the heaviest fine in Australian football history ©Getty Images

A-League club Melbourne Victory has been given a fine of AUD $450,000 (£255,000/$311,000/€289,000), the biggest in Australian football history, for their fans' pitch invasion in the derby with Melbourne City last month.

In addition to the fine handed out by Football Australia (FA), Melbourne Victory lost approximately AUD $100,000 (£57,000/$69,000/€64,000) in revenue from the match on December 17, which was suspended at AAMI Park after 22 minutes, shortly after Aiden O'Neill gave Melbourne City a 1-0 lead.

FA said the club "brought the game into disrepute" when approximately 150 fans stormed the pitch, attacking players and officials and causing damage to the stadium.

After a flare thrown onto the pitch at the feet of Melbourne City goalkeeper Tom Glover was thrown back at the fans, fans flooded the pitch in retaliation.

Melbourne Victory also has a suspended 10-point deduction, which will be enforced if any future supporter misconduct occurs over the next three years, ending at the beginning of the 2025-2026 A-League season.

A total of AUD $150,000 (£85,000/$103,000/€96,000) has to be given to FA, with the same amount to Melbourne City to pay for damages.

Another AUD $100,000 is suspended if a pitch invasion takes place over the next three seasons; while AUD $50,000 (£28,000/$35,000/€32,000) is to go towards replaying the derby, which is to restart in the 22nd minute, in April.

Melbourne Victory said it would accept the punishment in a statement and focus on "revitalising their match day experience".

Melbourne Victory fans stormed the pitch last month against Melbourne City ©Getty Images
Melbourne Victory fans stormed the pitch last month against Melbourne City ©Getty Images

The club cannot sell tickets in the areas where their active support are - in other parts of the world known as ultras - during home games for the rest of the season, with the first three rows behind the goals at their games being inaccessible too as part of the sanctions.

Tickets will not be given to the club for away games for the rest of the season.

Megaphones, drums and flags will also be banned for active fans.

"The sanctions we have issued against Melbourne Victory are the heaviest in the A-League era," said FA chief executive James Johnson.

"These sanctions are reflective of our desire to remove this behaviour, and those that perpetrate it, from our game.

"The field of play is sacred, and the safety of our players and match officials is paramount. 

"Those individuals who illegally entered the field of play, caused damage, and verbally and physically assaulted players and officials, crossed the line.

"We have worked closely with Victoria Police to identify these individuals and will continue to do so to ensure that those that display anti-social and criminal behaviour at football events are not involved in our game in any way.

"I can sympathise with the vast majority of fans and the broader football community who were sickened and hurt by the actions of those individuals.

"The sanctions imposed on Melbourne Victory are a necessary step to ensure we create an environment where we place football first, and our community can enjoy matches."

So far 17 fans have been handed bans from football stadiums, while several others are facing criminal charges.

A Melbourne City supporter who threw a flare is also being investigated.

The pitch invasion happened less than a week after FA announced the A-League Finals would take place in Sydney over the next three seasons instead of the highest-ranked team from the regular season, a decision that was regarded unpopular with supporters across the country.