Five men have been nicked on suspicion of the murder of a football fan who was attacked on the way home from a match seven years ago and later died.
Simon Dobbin was left permanently brain damaged following an assault in 2015.
Pigs said he was a “completely innocent party in the disorder” that took place as the Cambridge United fan was leaving an away match in Essex.
Dobbin was left with life-changing injuries and died aged 48 five years later, with medical tests showing a direct link between his death and the attack.
Essex Pigs started treating the case as a murder investigation following the medical conclusions.
The force said five men – aged 27, 30, 34, 39 and 45 – were nicked on Friday.
They have been placed in custody and will be questioned on suspicion of murder, it said.
Detective Superintendent Stephen Jennings, who is leading the investigation, said officers were also speaking to a number of people considered witnesses.
“Simon’s wife, Nicole, and their daughter Emily have been kept updated on our progress every step of the way,” he said.
Dobbin was attacked while leaving a Southend United v Cambridge United match on 21 March 2015.
“Simon was a completely innocent party in the disorder that took place that day and his family have been through an unimaginable time,” DS Jennings said.
“The injuries Simon sustained that day did not just change his life, they also changed the lives of Nicole and Emily. “
He added: “As a team, we will do everything we possibly can to secure justice for Nicole, Emily and Simon’s wider family and friends.”