Comedian charged with pitch encroachment at Manchester City game

Simon Brodkin joined pre-match warm-up dressed as his footballer character Jason Bent, before being handed over to police

The comedian Simon Brodkin has been charged with pitch encroachment after joining in with Manchester City's pre-game warm-up on Saturday.

Brodkin, best known for his character Lee Nelson, took to the pitch at Goodison Park on Saturday before Manchester City's away match against Everton in the guise of his fictional footballer Jason Bent, one of many roles he plays in his BBC3 series Lee Nelson's Well Funny People.

Dressed in a maroon City strip and fluorescent yellow boots, he managed to take part in the team's warm-up for around five minutes before being spotted and escorted off the pitch by match stewards. According to Chortle, he was heard to say, "Come on, let me play. I've got 50 grand on me to score first."

The comic was handed over to police and is due to appear before the Liverpool Community Justice Centre on 3 April, where he will be charged with pitch encroachment under the Football Offences Act.

A BBC spokesperson told Digital Spy that, as far as they knew, the stunt was not part of Brodkin's sketch show.

It marks Brodkin's second arrest in six months, after he was apprehended in November, this time as Lee Nelson, after pretending to steal a copy of his own DVD at an HMV store in London.

Police have said that the stunt did not delay the match, which Everton went on to win 2-0.

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