Premier League fans who set off smoke bombs and pyrotechnics or invade the pitch face an automatic ONE-YEAR BAN as part of crackdown on anti-social behaviour inside stadiums
- Premier League clubs voted unanimously for tougher sanctions on fans who light smoke bombs or invade the pitch at matches
- Fans will be banned automatically for at least one year for anti-social actions
- Ban would be applicable to both home and away matches involving their team
- Punishment would also be extended to parents or guardians of children
- It follows a series of worrying incidents in English football last season
Fans who let off smoke bombs or invade the pitch at Premier League football matches will be automatically banned from their club for at least one year.
The 20 Premier League clubs unanimously agreed to introduce the punishments as part of a crackdown on anti-social and criminal fan behaviour inside stadiums.
The new policy comes into effect immediately with the ban applicable to both home and away matches. It could also be extended to parents or guardians of children who take part in such activities.
A Premier League statement read: ‘At a Premier League Shareholders’ Meeting today, clubs unanimously agreed to introduce minimum-length bans for supporters who take part in anti-social and criminal behaviours at League stadiums.
‘Fans caught carrying or activating pyrotechnics or smoke bombs, or entering the pitch without permission, will receive an automatic club ban with a minimum term of one year.
Everton’s Richarlison throws a blue smoke flare back into the stands at Goodison Park
Football supporters who invade the pitch or set off smoke bombs face a one-year ban
‘These bans could also be extended to accompanying parents or guardians of children who take part in such activities.
‘This policy is effective immediately and the ban is applicable to both home and away matches.’
Incidents of supporters rushing on to the pitch have increased of late, sparking concern about the safety of footballers.
Sheffield United captain Billy Sharp was assaulted by an invader during last season’s Championship play-off semi-finals, resulting in a prison sentence for a Nottingham Forest fan.
Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira kicked out at an Everton fan who’d been goading him while filming the confrontation during a pitch invasion at Goodison Park to mark their Premier League survival.
Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira kicked out at an Everton fan who’d invaded the pitch to mark their Premier League safety and goaded him
A Leicester fan ran onto the pitch and swung punches at celebrating Nottingham Forest players during their FA Cup tie at the City Ground in February
A Leicester City fan ran onto the pitch and swung punches at Forest players celebrating a goal in their FA Cup tie at the City Ground in February.
Since 1991 it has been an offence to enter the pitch without permission, but that rule has tended to be ignored when a club is celebrating promotion or avoiding relegation.
The use of smoke bombs and flares in the stands has become commonplace at all levels of the game when celebrating goals.