The Premier League, English Football League (EFL) and Football Association (FA) have called on the Government to apply “consistency in their policy” when it comes to spectator attendance.
The joint statement came as a petition launched to support the return of fans sailed through the threshold needed for parliament consideration.
English football’s three main governing bodies yesterday (Tuesday) issued a joint statement ramping up pressure on the Government to reverse its stance on fan attendance in the men’s and women’s game.
The statement read: “With the EFL, Premier League, Women’s Super League and Women’s Championship already staging 11 successful test events recently, we have demonstrated that we can deliver matches safely. The sooner we can return, the sooner we can reunite communities and support local jobs, livelihoods, regional businesses and also the national economy.
“We will continue to urge Government to allow us to return fans safely to stadiums. It is positive progress that major arts and music venues have been told they can run socially-distanced events indoors. And now football should be allowed to do the same – in highly regulated and stewarded outdoor environments.”
The joint statement from the Premier League, EFL and FA comes amid rising fan discontent on social media, where the hashtag #letfansin has become popular. Indeed, a supporters’ petition entitled “Allow football fans to attend matches at all levels” has been launched, which the EFL and its member clubs promoted via social media yesterday evening.
As of 9am GMT today, the petition had gathered 138,675 signatures. Government responds to all petitions that get more than 10,000 signatures, while those with more than 100,000 signatures are considered for a debate.
Football fans lashed out on social media after the announcement on Monday that The O2 arena in London will welcome 4,700 socially distanced fans in December.
One fan tweeted: “So 4,700 can attend an event in an enclosed arena, but 1,000 socially distant fans aren’t allowed to attend a game in the open air? Getting ridiculous now.”
Image: Premier League