Sheffield United fans banned for smoke bombs

Brentford v Sheffield United      10.8.13'Pic : Martyn Harrison' SMOKE BOMB THROWN FROM THE Brentford SECTION OF THE CROWD  ''� BLADES SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHY
Brentford v Sheffield United 10.8.13'Pic : Martyn Harrison' SMOKE BOMB THROWN FROM THE Brentford SECTION OF THE CROWD ''� BLADES SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHY
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A number of Sheffield United fans have been slapped with banning orders for using inappropriate behaviour and throwing smoke bombs at games.

The club launched an inquiry amid reports of offensive language and smoke bombings at both home and away fixtures.

A number of individuals were identified in the inquiry, thanks to assistance of CCTV, police and stewards.

The findings have now been passed on to the Football Association and South Yorkshire Police..

This week the club has handed out a number of banning orders to fans - and warned that further incidents will be treated in a similar manner.

Steve Hicks, safety officer at the club, said: “Quite simply we are determined to bring to a swift end to this inappropriate behaviour by a group of fans.

“This week’s banning orders indicate that we are weeding out the troublemakers and we will continue to do so to protect the reputation of the club and the impact on other fans.

“Each Football League club is responsible for the actions of its own supporters - home or away - and the actions of a minority is putting the lives of fellow supporters in danger as well as potentially putting the Club at risk of costly and severe sanctions from The Football Association.”

Incidents involving Sheffield United supporters, at either ‘home’ or ‘away’ fixtures, are recorded at the police national database.

Incidents involving criminal activity - such as pyrotechnic activation - or regulation breaches will be recorded.

Mr Hicks added: “This can affect the time a fixture is played or the police category of matches played at Bramall Lane.

“A police-free game means just that - no financial outlay for policing whatsoever. An increased risk high category can cost the Club up to £37,000.

“I wonder how many fans who are involved in incidents of irresponsible behaviour have ever considered how many supporters we need in the stadium to pay that sort of bill?

“Try multiplying that figure by the 23 home matches we host every season and the mind boggling sum is the potential cost if we don’t end this trend.

“As we try to continue to compete in the league in which we find ourselves, and indeed try to compete with other teams in this area, we potentially find ourselves with a huge disadvantage before we start.”

Supporters wishing to confidentially report any incident can do so by contacting the Club at info@sufc.co.uk