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Dear UEFA, please may we have safe standing areas?

This is a story from the FSF archive – the FSF and Supporters Direct merged to become the FSA in 2019 – so this page may contain hyperlinks that do not work and/or have missing files. Our archived pages are not maintained and will not be updated.

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Every week thousands upon thousands of fans stand in front of their seats during the game while singing their hearts out in support of the team they love. Attempts by the authorities to stamp down on this practice have failed and, if anything, the number of people standing is growing – that’s why the Football Supporters’ Federation’s Safe Standing Campaign is so important.

But it’s not just the Premier League and Championship that refuse to champion safe standing areas. The Euros have also shown that our continental cousins often prefer to stand as well – despite UEFA’s refusal to allow any of its competitions to be played in front of safe standing areas.

A reminder to Monsieur Platini and co that fans want the choice to sit or stand…

Polish fans would like the choice…

Dutch fans would like the choice…

English fans would like the choice…

Images courtesy of our friends at Action Images.

Read more on the FSF’s Safe Standing Campaign here including the aims and objectives of the campaign, the legalities of standing, and some of the Key Designs used in European Safe Standing areas.

  • Every week thousands upon thousands of fans stand in front of their seats for the duration of the game while following the team they love – attempts by the authorities to end this practice have failed. Surveys regularly show the vast majority of supporters back the choice to stand or sit. The FSF’s National Supporters’ Survey showed that 90% of fans back the choice to stand or sit.
  • The FSF’s Safe Standing Campaign is not just about those who prefer to stand. By giving supporters the choice, everyone benefits. Those who wish to stand can do so, while those who prefer to sit no longer have to worry about having their view blocked.
  • The FSF does not propose that the stringent safety standards laid down in the Government’s Green Guide be abolished or weakened. But we do think fans in the Premier League or Championship should also be allowed to stand in safety as those in any other division can. The idea that safety depends upon the quality of football played on the pitch is absurd.
  • We are not suggesting that clubs should be forced to provide safe standing areas – only that they should be allowed the choice. Issues around cost and feasibility should be a matter for individual clubs, not for government.
  • Many opponents to safe standing mistakenly cite Hillsborough as a reason not to allow its introduction. However the disaster was not caused by standing; the Taylor Report primarily blamed overcrowding, stadium layout, and poor policing. It did not ban standing nor claim it was inherently unsafe.
  • UEFA regulations state that European competitions must be played in all-seated stadiums. Safe standing areas can be convertible to and from seating, so this is not an obstacle to clubs providing standing accommodation for domestic games.
  • In both England and abroad, ticket prices for standing areas are typically lower than in seated areas, making the stadiums more socially inclusive.

Still not convinced? Read the Safe Standing Mythbuster here…

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Related Articles

Standing areas have “positive impact” on safety – SGSA report

Safe standing at football grounds has had “a positive impact on spectator safety” and improved the matchday experience for thousands already, says an interim report from the SGSA.

Safe standing areas come to Brentford, QPR, Wolves… and Wembley

Brentford, QPR and Wolves are the latest clubs to confirm they will have safe standing areas – and more clubs are expected to follow next season as the Government has confirmed that Premier League and Championship clubs can introduce standing during 2022/23.

Government announces first round of new standing areas at five clubs

Cardiff City, Chelsea, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur will be the first clubs to have licensed ‘safe standing’ in seated areas from January 1st the sports minister announced today.

Gov’t to support expansion of licensed standing areas next season

The sports minister today announced that the Government is “minded to support the wider roll-out of licensed standing areas” for the start of next season.

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