Sunderland ban fans for standing

LONDON Fri Dec 28, 2012 2:49am IST

Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, daughter of Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi, adjusts her flower garlands as she campaigns for her mother during an election meeting at Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh April 22, 2014. REUTERS/Pawan Kumar

Election 2014

More than 814 million people — a number larger than the population of Europe — are eligible to vote in the world’s biggest democratic exercise.  Full Coverage 

LONDON (Reuters) - Sunderland have taped up seats and stripped several fans of their season tickets for standing during matches as controversy grows over a law that requires many English soccer spectators to sit.

The law was passed in the wake of the Hillsborough disaster when 96 supporters were crushed to death and many more injured due to over-crowding at an FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest in 1989.

Standing sections in the top two English divisions were subsequently removed and stadiums converted into all-seater arenas.

A photo on Twitter showed a seat at Sunderland's Stadium of Light taped up with the sign: "This season card has been suspended due to persistent standing."

Sunderland said in a statement on their website that 38 supporters have been ejected for standing this season.

"We certainly don't wish to spoil the enjoyment of any supporters... but we also have legal obligations that we must be seen to be adhering to," said Paul Weir, head of safety and security at Sunderland.

The club said they could be forced to close areas where standing persists, although they are keen to avoid such a measure.

A number of campaigns have been launched to try to change the law on standing, most notably by the Football Supporters' Federation.

A United Kingdom House of Commons note published earlier this month said: "The Government has said that it will keep matters under review, but that there is no 'compelling case' for a change to the current rules."

Standing is allowed in many other European top flights.

(Reporting by Stephen Eisenhammer, editing by Mark Meadows)

Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Coach Fired

Coach Fired

Struggling Nuremberg sack coach Verbeek   Full Article 

Costa Hope

Costa Hope

Atletico need Costa inspiration at Stamford Bridge  Full Article 

Bale Health

Bale Health

Real's Bale a doubt for Bayern game with illness - reports  Full Article 

Europa Semis

Europa Semis

Benfica and Juventus meet after 21-year wait  Full Article 

Chelsea Draw

Chelsea Draw

Mourinho's cautious Chelsea frustrate Atletico  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage