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The Safe Standing Debate

Discussion in 'The Away End' started by RajahRar, Sep 4, 2017.

  1. RajahRar

    RajahRar Pretty cool guy, for a Scouser.

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    The safe standing debate continues to gather pace in the UK.

    Historically, all-seater stadium for the top 2 divisions became law following the Taylor Report (Hillsborough). While it has since been argued and accepted that standing was not the direct cause of the disaster, there is still a natural stigma to the idea that football could return to the bad old days.

    It is important to point out that safe standing does not mean a return to un-ticketed, ‘cram them in’ terraces. Safe standing areas currently employed are still ticketed and still require max allocations in each row, section, and stand.

    The best examples of safe standing exist in Germany. Most clubs employ such areas in their grounds and we’ve all seen Dortmund and the atmosphere they create. Many argue that the standing section helps to not only create a more vibrant atmosphere but also increases safety in areas that many people already stand in any way. In addition, the configuration of rail seating that Dortmund use means that they have an increased capacity of 81,360 for domestic games. This is reduced for European games, as UEFA do not allow standing. The seated configuration takes it to 65,289. Dortmund achieves this by essentially having 3 people to every two ‘seat spaces’ in the rail seating section. The matches are still all ticketed and ticket holders must still stand in specific spaces, to prevent overcrowding.

    [​IMG]

    In Scotland, Celtic have pioneered a similar form of rail seating. The only difference here to Germany, is that each seat space is allocated to only one ticketed person, as laws exist in UK regarding minimum space for allocation. So there is no increase in capacity by having rail seating at Celtic Park, but improved atmospheres, singing etc have been recorded.

    [​IMG]

    The Anfield Wrap took a trip up to Scotland to review the changes at Celtic Park, and this can be read here

    In England, Shrewsbury became the first club to state they would take advantage of new league rules that allow League 1 and 2 clubs to install a limited number of rail seats in their grounds for trial. Numerous premier league clubs have expressed an interest.

    Finally, in July, the Liverpool supporter group, Spirit of Shankly, carried out a week-long poll of Liverpool fans to gauge views on what is an emotive issue. Views were taken from Hillsborough families, Celtic reps, FSF and the Sports Ground Safety Authority. 88% of 18,000 Liverpool fans polled, gave resounding approval to rail seating being introduced to English stadia.

    Personally, I find the current configuration of seats very dangerous in sell-out games (which most matches I attend are). Also, away fans stand in every PL ground in the land, which only increases the risk of injury when people are falling over knee-high seats in front of them when goals or chances are created.

    [​IMG]

    What are other people’s views? Would you like to see rail seating introduced? Perhaps on the Stretford End, Kop etc. Perhaps in the away sections of PL grounds as well. Are some against the concept? Why? Should our clubs go further and push for a more German style concept in which 3 people occupy two traditional seat spaces, to increase capacity and produce a more intense atmosphere?

    Over to you.
     
    #1
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2017
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  2. Big Papi

    Big Papi Bogger

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    Well, Liverpool fans are the voice of the entire country, so if they say yes, with their history n all, then it should be implemented.
     
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  3. ciderman9000000

    ciderman9000000 Intellectually reluctant poster

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    Well written thread, Raj.

    I doubt you'll find many football supporters that disagree with this form of safe standing. The last paragraph above the picture rings most true for me — the current seating setup is a fucking pain when standing, with the row in front constantly banging the shins and causing people to fall forwards without anywhere to reposition your feet for better balance.

    I've never been to Dortmund, but I did see them play a few years ago vs Werder at the Weserstadion in Bremem where safe standing was being used, and I gotta agree that the atmosphere was fucking rocking and those rail seats really do the trick in keeping the crowd both dynamic, safe and organised.

    I see no reason whatsoever why the higher tiers of English football could not begin using that same system immediately. The laws against them are draconian and I cannot imagine that they won't be reassessed sometime in the near future.
     
    #3
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2017
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  4. iczster

    iczster The beez still buzz ...
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    Good stuff @RajahRar unlike @gasman you followed my instructions :lool:

    I'm all for safe standing it would go some way to bringing back traditional atmospheres into the grounds and get rid of some of those cunts with iPads. In the stretty end we stand all game anyway, but certainly other areas of the ground (and stadiums) would benefit.

    I'm both angered and annoyed that the entire fabrication of doing away with terraces was built on a pack of lies in the first place (not trying to be controversial here). It sanitised and neutered the game too much in my opinion but Im not saying go back to the days of having shit and piss thrown over you either :lool:
     
    #4
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  5. gasman

    gasman Mr Whippy

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    Standing in the old fashioned terraces was a fucking nightmare, 20,000 bellends all shunting you forward because United had attacked and gained a corner. If that wasn't bad enough, It was an absolute game of survival when your team scored.

    That said, I do miss that side, it was the pinnacle of my time as a supporter and back then we weren't even that good.

    Aside from @iczster and his controversial politics on the subject, the ban/changes were probably for the best at the time.

    I'll certainly support a return in any format. Whether or not it can return the old atmosphere remains to be seen.
     
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  6. Nostracarmus

    Nostracarmus Je Suis Un Fanny

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    Did... Did iczster just take the credit for this thread?
     
    #6
  7. RajahRar

    RajahRar Pretty cool guy, for a Scouser.

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    @iczster

    I do agree that the move to all-seater stadia was, in isolation, a mistake following the taylor report. Allocated space/seat, all ticketing, maximum limits on number of people per row or section. These are the things that were needed, and all those things got wrapped up with all-seater. They could have achieved the same safety improvements with all those things, excluding all seater.

    Given the circumstances (not just Hillsborough, but the state of football in the 1980s), I'm not surprised that the powers-that-be went to the extreme level in terms what they perceived as making grounds safe and more 'family friendly'. The downsides have been the loss of atmosphere and the shocking increase in prices.

    However, grounds are now fundamentally safer than back in the 1980s. And while people do stand in away ends and on the Stretford End and Kop, it just makes sense to return these parts of the grounds to standing, but still with the safety net of allocated spaces, all ticket etc.
     
    #7
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  8. Nostracarmus

    Nostracarmus Je Suis Un Fanny

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    I hope they do something.

    As it currently is, people are in danger due to the seats being in ends like the Kop or the Stretty. Nobody sits longer than a minute there.

    I've nearly gone over a few times when we've scored, and that's at the other end. It's madness.
     
    #8
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  9. iczster

    iczster The beez still buzz ...
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    Huh ?!
     
    #9
  10. Nostracarmus

    Nostracarmus Je Suis Un Fanny

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    #10
  11. Irwinwastheking

    Irwinwastheking Lover, not a fighter!

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    Safestanding is safer than the current safe seating. It's better in every way. Should have been done years ago.
     
    #11

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