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Man Utd fan wins court battle thanks to FSF and IMUSA

Here at the FSF all sorts of fans get in touch with us – innocent, guilty, confused, scared, angry, we’ve seen it all – and we’ve long worked off the principle that everyone has a right to fair advice and access to legal representation. We believe people are innocent until proven guilty and not the other way around as many clubs would have you believe it should be.

Banned Sunderland fans launch Quinn petition appeal

Sunderland supporters unfairly banned by their club from entering the Stadium of Light have come together to launch a petition appealing to chairman Niall Quinn to overturn the club’s decision. The fans have joined forces following an incident which occurred at Central Station on Saturday 8th August 2009.

Guilty until proven innocent – Sunderland fans face ban

We’ve heard from a number of Sunderland fans today who’ve been told by the club that they’re receiving bans following the now infamous Central Station incident. In brief, four fans were hospitalised and many more injured (no police were hurt) as supporters returning from their club’s pre-season tie with Hearts were met by Northumbria Police. You can read more on the campaign around Sunderland fans at Central Station here.

Is Section 27 back?

We first heard of Section 27 (from the Violent Crime Reduction Act of 2006) in November 2007 after dozens of Stoke fans contacted us complaining of its use. The Act gives police the power to effectively ban individuals from specific areas for 48 hours. The FSF argued its use had been unlawful and eventually police compensated Stoke fans. It was a big victory and showed what can be achieved by normal fans.

Bates bans The Guardian from Elland Road

Imagine our surprise this morning when we flicked through the papers and spotted that Leeds United have banned The Guardian from Elland Road. This is on the back of a series of articles bringing the club’s ownership into question by the paper’s David Conn – a sportswriter so good we only went and gave him our Football Writer of the Year for 2009 award.

Pompey fans ejected for “Taking the Mickey”

John Portsmouth Football Club Westwood is arguably the best known football fan in England. Not only does he follow Pompey week in, week out but – as you might already have guessed – he even changed his name by deed poll just in case you couldn’t work out who he supported. But news reaches us that on Saturday he was thrown out, along with five or six other Pompey fans, during his team’s home game with Spurs. And the reason given to Westwood for his eviction? “Taking the Mickey out of the stewards.”

Police say sorry to Stoke fans

Every week we have our column in the Daily Mirror’s Saturday Mania section which gives us the chance to flag up fan issues that otherwise might slip by the mainstream media. See below for the latest piece and let us know if there’s anything you think we should be reporting on.

Bubble trouble for Burnley fans

Over the past week or so we’ve heard from a lot of Burnley fans who are rightly angry that their club’s Premier League trip to Ewood Park has been designated a ‘bubble match’. Bubble matches are games where ALL away fans must travel on designated transport from a specific pick up point. No independent travel is allowed, although supporters’ coaches may be used, and fans are usually given match tickets en route to the game.

Support your team not violence

Far too often the media pick up on a few numpties fighting and whip up a moral panic around football hooliganism.

Sunderland fans demand truth over police actions

Sunderland supporters are coming together to hand out 10,000 flyers before their team’s Premier League game with Wolves on Sunday. The flyers, which have the backing of the FSF, will appeal for witnesses to an incident that took place at Newcastle’s Central Station on Saturday 8th August – email the FSF today if you’d like to help hand them out.

The crime of being a football fan

Spiked online is a website dedicated to independent thought which fights prejudice, illiberalism, luddism and all sorts of other isms that we too disagree with. It’s becoming a bit of a favourite here at the FSF and has produced a string of articles which sum up exactly how unfair and frustrating the policing of football fans can be – see the links at the bottom of this page. First up though, Celtic fan Kevin Rooney tells us why he’ll be standing up to the police in court…

FSF investigates claims of heavy-handed policing

The FSF has been concerned to hear accounts of the treatment of Sunderland fans by Northumbria Police at Newcastle’s Central Station on Saturday 8th August. The Mackems were returning from their side’s pre-season friendly with Hearts.

Police admit unlawful use of section 27 on Stoke fan

Stoke City fan Lyndon Edwards, 38, has been awarded £2,750 in compensation following unlawful police action in Manchester last year. Greater Manchester Police (GMP) used section 27 of the Violent Crime Reduction Act to round up more than 80 Stoke City fans prior to their club’s Premier League tie with Manchester United at Old Trafford on Saturday, November 15, 2008.

‘Smart Alec’ Fan Banned

Taunton Town fan Paul Chandler, the former chairman of the team’s Supporters’ Club, has been banned from attending the non-league team’s ground for the ridiculous reason of being an ‘ass’ and a ‘smart Alec’, in the opinion of the Taunton Town chairman.

Leeds and Millwall fans join forces

Fans of both Leeds United and Millwall have come together following news that the potential play-off tie between both clubs could see away fan numbers limited to only 1,000 tickets for each leg. Although not a certainty it is looking increasingly likely that both teams will meet unless third placed MK Dons slip to an unexpected last day defeat at Hereford.

Man Utd fan nets refund thanks to the FSF

Here at the FSF we often hear of fans that have been unfairly targeted by stewards and subsequently found themselves kicked out of games, or worse, banned from grounds. So we are pleased to highlight the case of 17-year-old Sam Jones who feared the worst when he was thrown out of Upton Park.

Trouble flares in Italy as English fans attacked

Arsenal’s Champions League victory in Rome last night was marred by reports from Italy that a number of away fans had been attacked by the home team’s support. The story follows depressingly similar lines to previous ones on English fans in Italy. In recent years Manchester United and Middlesbrough fans have been attacked while two Chelsea supporters were reportedly stabbed in Turin on Tuesday.

Fair Cop? travels to Portsmouth

Following on from the success of FSF Northeast’s Fair Cop? campaign members in our Southern Division ran their own version before Liverpool’s Premier League clash with Portsmouth on Saturday, February 7th, 2009. Pompey and Liverpool fans joined forces to hand out Fair Cop? cards – which offer advice on fans’ legal rights and Section 27 – at 19 pubs around Fratton Park, including the four most frequented by the away support. Fair Cop? also gives fans the opportunity to give their thoughts on policing and stewarding at games, be they positive or negative.

FSF partner the Convention on Modern Liberty

The FSF are pleased to announce our agreement to be a partner organisation to the Convention on Modern Liberty which is taking place in London and across the UK on Saturday, February 28th, 2009. Steve Powell, FSF director of policy & campaigns, will speak on the London platform about issues which matter to football fans and the organisers are keen to encourage participation from football supporters.

FSF EVENT INVITE: Sit Down, Shut Up!

Every day the FSF hears from fans telling us that they’re sick of being treated like criminals by over-zealous police, tired of taking orders from doormen dressed up as ‘stewards’, and had enough with clubs forcing them to sit down when they’d rather stand.

Funding partners

  • The Football Association
  • Premier Leage Fans Fund

Partners

  • Gamble Aware
  • Co-operatives UK
  • FSE
  • Kick It Out
  • Level Playing Field
  • Living Wage Foundation
  • SD Europe