Dozens of Bristol City fans banned from matches

Fans of Bristol City faced dozens of banning orders at the end of last season, new figures show.

Fans of Bristol City faced dozens of banning orders at the end of last season, new figures show.

Football banning orders are given to those who commit certain offences within a stadium, travelling to or from a game, or are crimes that are deemed to be football-related.

If issued, the fan cannot go to any football match within the UK, and has to surrender their passport when a national game is played outside of the country.

There were 29 football banning orders in force for fans of Bristol City at the end of last season.

Of these, 10 were issued during the 2021-22 season.

Across England and Wales, football-related disorder has surged.

Football-related arrests were up by 59% compared to 2018-19, the last season undisrupted by the pandemic, to 2,198.

The was also the highest number since 2,273 were made in the 2013-14 season.

And the authorities dished out 516 new football banning orders in total, meaning 1,308 were in force by the summer of 2022.

Chief Constable Mark Roberts, the National Police Chiefs’ Council lead for football policing, said: “Disorder is a problem that has not gone away, and throughout the whole of last season we saw an increase in crime at football matches across the country – from the Premier League right down to the National League.

“Following constructive talks with the Premier League, EFL and FA we are keen to support our partners in delivering their proposals – including the introduction of stadium bans for people who enter the pitch, as well as those who use pyrotechnics.

“The statistics released today show a worrying rise in these crimes, which are both extremely dangerous for players, staff and fellow fans alike.”

The Premier League saw the most banning orders of England and Wales’ top five leagues, with 412 in force at the end of the season, while Championship fans were issued 356.

The figures also show there were 32 football-related arrests of Bristol City fans last season – the most since at least the 2014/15 season, when figures are first available.

​Last season, the most common offence was public disorder, for which there were 10 arrests.​

West Ham had the highest number of arrests for a single club – 95 across the season – followed by Manchester City with 76, and Manchester United with 72.

Nationally, hate crime was reported 384 times, and drug use 170 times – both all-time highs.

Home Office Minister Jeremy Quin said: “Our football clubs are at the heart of our communities, and it is unacceptable that the game we all love is tarnished by a minority of selfish troublemakers.

“The increase in football-related arrests shows that police are taking firm action to stop this disorder and preserve the enjoyment of the game for fans and families which I wholeheartedly support.”