Search

Arsenal lagging behind Premier League rivals on Safe Standing campaign

PUBLISHED: 07:29 02 February 2017

Safe standing at Celtic Park

Safe standing at Celtic Park

Archant

Arsenal are in danger of being left behind in the drive to reintroduce safe standing at top-level football, according to campaigners.

At a meeting organised by the Arsenal Supporters’ Trust, fans learned that the Gunners – unlike other leading Premier League clubs – have yet to fully commit themselves to backing the Safe Standing campaign.

Following the meeting Jon Darch, founder of the Safe Standing roadshow, said: “Manchester United have asked for fans’ views in a questionnaire and Chelsea and Tottenham have made clear that their new stadiums are being constructed with safe standing considered.

“While [Arsenal chief executive] Ivan Gazidis admits he’s interested by the idea, and [Arsene] Wenger has given it his backing, as a club they’re yet to announce their support.

“If they don’t do so soon, they’re at risk of being the last top Premier League club to get on board.”

The debate about reintroducing standing to Premier League and Championship stadiums is of particular interest to Arsenal fans, many of whom have voiced their discontent about a lack of atmosphere at home games.

Celtic supporters have hailed their club’s success with a trial of 3,000 Safe Standing rail seats and there are hopes that a similar scheme could have a positive effect on the atmosphere at the Emirates.

Akhil Vyas, an AST board member and Arsenal season ticket-holder, said: “A standing section would also be known as a singing section – the home supporters could get the atmosphere going like away fans do.

“With a better atmosphere, you can help influence the game in terms of key decisions.”

Questions were raised as to how the Safe Standing campaign could help reduce ticket costs – which are notoriously high at Arsenal – with the idea of accommodating more than one person per rail seat put forward as a possibility.

Peter Daykin of the Football Supporters’ Federation said: “Costs of tickets at Arsenal are ludicrous. Our aim is to remove the impediment and leave clubs to discuss pricing at a local level.”

Arsenal Supporters’ Trust have issued a survey which urges Gunners fans to give their views. The results of the questionnaire will be used as evidence in discussions with the club and the Premier League, which are due to take place soon.

An Arsenal spokesman stated: “We supported the Premier League undertaking a review to ascertain whether standing can be introduced safely and without reintroducing some of the historic issues in the game.

“This will take some time, but the process has begun.”

Latest Islington Sports News

57 minutes ago

Arsene Wenger taunted London rivals Chelsea by dismissing transfer speculation on Alexis Sanchez’s future as he prepares his Arsenal side for Sunday’s crunch game against Manchester City at the Emirates.

Yesterday, 14:30

International looks ahead to rest of the season and insists focus is on the Gunners and nothing else

Tue, 10:14

Three Islington judoka from the Sobell Judo Club travelled to Thessaloniki, Greece with the JFAUK National Judo Team to take part in the 2017 Miyazaki International Cup.

Tue, 09:35

As I was putting together a round-up of how the Arsenal men, and teens, got on during the international break it suddenly struck me. Apart from a few minutes of England v Lithuania snatched during Mothers Day – to keep tabs on The Ox more than anything – I hadn’t actually watched any games.

Tue, 06:00

Islington Panthers U18s successful season continued as they reached the second round of the U18 play-offs.

Mon, 16:41

Islington Boxing Club had another busy wekeend for its boxers.

Mon, 15:00

Olympian will fight again on April 15 after KO win in first fight

Mon, 12:21

Boxers from Islington Boxing Club started their journey to be crowned London Boxing Elite Champion with the quarter-finals and semi-finals.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read sport

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now