Football-related arrests reach a new high as the Home Office reveals 2,264 fans were arrested last season… with West Ham, Man United and Leeds supporters being the worst offenders
A total of 2,264 football-related arrests were made during the 2022-2023 season, marking a new high in England and Wales.
The home office revealed the increase from the 2021-2022 campaign, when 2,198 fans were arrested, which was the highest number since 2013-2014.
The figures include arrests for the first time in connection with the World Cup, possession of class A drugs and women’s football matches in England and Wales.
A total of 200 arrests were made for possession of Class A drugs, 101 of which were linked to the World Cup.
No arrests have been reported in connection with regulated women’s football matches or the Women’s World Cup.
A total of 2,264 football-related arrests were made by police in the 2022-2023 season
West Ham had the highest number of supporters arrested for the second season in a row
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The Home Office reported that 90 percent of arrests involved supporters of clubs from the five biggest English football divisions.
‘Before the 2019-2020 season, there was a downward trend in football-related arrests; a decrease of more than half (-55%) from 3,089 in the 2010 to 2011 season to 1,381 in the 2018 to 2019 season (before COVID-19),” the Ministry of Home Affairs said.
“In the 2021 through 2022 and 2022 through 2023 seasons, the number of arrests increased to a level comparable to that of the 2013 through 2014 season.”
A total of 1,624 football banning orders were in force as of August 1, representing a 24 percent increase on the previous year. This included 682 new ban orders issued during the 2022/2023 season, an increase of 32 percent compared to the previous campaign.
This figure represents the highest number of banning orders since the 2010 to 2011 season. A banning order lasts a minimum of three years.
Men are responsible for 99.6 percent of banning orders, with 70 percent of those on people aged 18 to 34, while two percent were imposed on fans aged 17 or under.
Manchester United supporters had the highest number of football bans in force with 69, followed by Millwall with 66 and Leicester with 56.
Birmingham City and West Ham fans completed the top five with 54 and 52 bans respectively.
A Tottenham fan was given a four-year ban after kicking Arsenal’s Aaron Ramsdale
Newcastle boss Eddie Howe was confronted by a pitch intruder during a match against Leeds
For the second year running, West Ham had the highest number of fans arrested, with 89. Man United and Leeds United had 83 and 69 arrests, with the former seeing the biggest increase compared to the 2021-2022 season.
The number of arrests for fans storming the pitch fell by 53 percent, with 166 incidents recorded.
A six per cent drop in the number of matches with reported incidents was reported, from 1,516 matches in 2022-23 compared to 1,609 the season before.
The figures come from the highest attendances at domestic and international men’s matches, with 45 million people watching matches during the season.
Several high-profile incidents took place last season, including Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale being kicked by a Tottenham fan after the North London derby in January. The supporter was given a four-year ban.
Liverpool also apologized to a Man City fan who was ‘scarred for life’ by a beer pot weighed down with coins during a Carabao Cup match in December.
A Leeds United supporter was arrested in May for entering the technical area and pushing Newcastle boss Eddie Howe.
The number of recorded incidents of online hate crime was 234, compared to 103 the year before.
The Ministry of the Interior was probably to thank for improved and more standardized recording methods.
The Premier League, FA and EFL have introduced measures ahead of the 2022-2023 season, with tougher sanctions being imposed on people identified for entering the pitch, using pyros, taking drugs to matches and throwing objects.
The organizations announced ahead of the 2023-2024 campaign that fans could face stadium bans and criminal charges if found guilty of abusing football tragedies under the new regulations.