Tim Brockmeyer and Philipp Hofmeister, who work for German broadcaster Hescher Rönnfunk, said my headphones were physically assaulted by West Ham fans after Michael Antonio equalized for the hosts in the first half.
The two said the West Ham fans were sitting right behind them irritated by their loud chanting as Frankfurt took the lead in the first minute of the match.
The incident was filmed live.
“We are being attacked from behind by the English fans, which is why we unfortunately went for a short time,” Hoffmeister said on the radio broadcast.
“So we’re being attacked from behind. And our colleague Tim has his headset thrown to the ground, so we really have to be a little careful what we’re doing here.”
West Ham told CNN it had identified two of the perpetrators and was continuing its investigation.
A West Ham spokesperson said: “In line with our zero-tolerance approach, details of the perpetrators have been passed on to the police, who will now conduct their own investigation.”
“If the perpetrators are found guilty, they will be given an indefinite ban and will not be allowed to enter the London Stadium or travel with the club. This type of behavior is unacceptable and will not be tolerated at West Ham United.”
CNN has contacted the Metropolitan Police in London but has yet to receive a response.
Commentators later thanked members of West Ham’s media department for moving them to a new seat at halftime.
“First of all, I’m sorry to all of you who may be used to performing differently than us,” Bruckmere added during the broadcast after they were moved.
“We were hoping for success in the first half, but if you always have the feeling that something could come from behind, another punch or kick or maybe something worse, you’re not free and you can’t focus on the match.”
Gabriel Holzner, director of programs at Hessischer Rundfunk, also condemned the attack on her reporters.
“A football stadium is not a lawless place,” Holzner told CNN.
“We expect the organizing club to ensure a safe environment for all reporters – including the visiting team – so they can do their work without fear of being attacked.
Punches and physical violence are not acceptable under any circumstances.
West Ham eventually lost the first leg 2–1, with the rematch on 5 May in Germany.