- Gareth Ellis
Eur having a laugh, just watch the game
It’s that time again. The European Championships are here filling football fans’ and non-football fans’ summers with the beautiful game.
Although a handful of people out in France want to fill the summer with the opposite – ugly scenes where yet again a minority of fans have been involved in hooligan-like behaviour.
What is the point? Honestly. Why can’t people go to a game in another country without causing trouble and shaming their nation? Europe will be hoping we vote leave.
Apparently Russians are trained in this kind of thing. Trained?! Seriously? Can you imagine going home after a day of hooligan school?
‘Oleg what did you learn today?’ ‘I learned how to hit people over the head with a chair. Oo and my flare shooting is now that of a 16-year-old’ Pathetic.
They should be learning how to read and write, not how to load up a Molotov cocktail. Although I guess that needs a little bit of scientific understanding.
The problem is that for some fans their idea of a good trip IS antagonising people. The thought of going to a game is the second thing on their minds.
I’ve been an eye witness to trouble at football. In 1996 I went to the play-off final between Northampton and Swansea and watched as glass bottles hit the ground just a few feet away from me. I was 10. There are people out in France from across Europe who will also have children of that age, maybe younger. I didn’t understand it. I was asking my Dad why they were doing that, while also genuinely worrying that one of the bottles would hit me or anyone I was with.
They do not need to be involved in scenes like that, even hearing about it would be terrifying.
When I was about 16 I went to a Man United game and heard Man City fans about 100 yards away as we walked back to the station saying they’d seen a load of United scum and they were after them. They weren’t even playing Man City that day.
Kicking racism out of football is a huge priority. One I’m massively behind. But with no pun intended we should be kicking out thugs. Fan bans and disqualifications may just be the start.