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Football fans criticise access at stadiums

fans seated in an accessible area at a football stadium
fans seated in an accessible area at a football stadium Image credit: independent.co.uk

A new report says football matches are “not fit for purpose” for disabled fans offering poor views of the game and being the target of verbal abuse.

According to Level Playing Field a majority of disabled supporters believe they "are not getting what they pay for" watching games at a stadium. 

Almost 50% complained about the poor view from accessible seating areas, putting them off buying tickets for matchday.

The study also found 43% were verbally bullied at a game or experienced a negative experience.

Level Playing Field chairman Tony Taylor said: "It's a sad situation.

"The ability to watch a football game without blocked sightlines and fear of abuse or judgement is a basic expectation not being met.”

He added: "Clearly, there is a need for greater education within football.

"In recent years, there have been significant steps taken by many clubs to improve the matchday experience of disabled fans in general. However, this survey shows that there is still much work to be done and that the away-fan experience, in particular, should be an area of focus for improvement by clubs."

A total of 28% respondents said their matchday experience was ruined by not being seated next to other fans and 23% reported a lack of disability awareness at stadiums.

There is a football stadium in Marina Bay, Singapore, which is a floating stage. A special boat is used to collect balls kicked over its fence.