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Proof of ID needed in Switzerland in bid to stamp out hooliganism

Switzerland’s football fans will have to provide proof of identity before entering stadiums in a bid to stamp out hooliganism. 

Following a meeting of the Conference of Cantonal Justice and Police Directors (CCJPD) in Mendrisio, Ticino, officials decided that fans will have to provide proof of identity before being allowed to enter stadiums for games in the Super League, the top tier of Swiss football. 

According to SwissInfo, talks will continue between cantonal authorities on December 10. This meeting will decide whether or not identity will need to be proven when purchasing the ticket or at the stadium itself. 

During the meeting in Mendrisio, it was also discussed whether or not the measure would be extended to the second division of Swiss football, the Challenge League, and ice hockey games. However, discussions on this have been halted for now. 

Hooliganism has been an issue in both football and ice hockey within the country. In October, a derby between FC Zurich and Grasshopper Club Zurich descended into chaos after the Super League game ended 3-3. 

Last year, it was reported that the level of hooliganism in the top two tiers of Swiss football had remained relatively similar despite the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic. During the 2019-20 season, 27 of the 323 were affected by violent incidents, compared to 48 out of 457 games during the 2018-19 season. 

In the top two ice hockey leagues in Switzerland, 21 of 666 games were affected by violence last season, compared to 12 out of 708 the year before. 

FC Sion was the first Swiss club to introduce nominative tickets for matches to help prevent acts of hooliganism. This means that ticket holders had to prove their identity. 

Visitor areas were also closed off at the club’s Stade Tourbillon. However, due to criticism from fans and the fact that other clubs had not yet partaken in a similar scheme, the club has now dropped these measures. 

Image: Florian Olivo on Unsplash