Blackpool launch investigation after worrying video emerges

By Terry Robinson, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=12002379

Blackpool are launching an investigation after a worrying video emerged on social media of a steward appearing to punch a fan at last night’s EFL Trophy game with Scunthorpe United.

The short clip shows a hooded man attempting to barge through stewards dressed in yellow vests and orange jackets.

As he is pushed back, one steward appears to punch him from behind in the side of the head.

In a short statement on the club’s official website, the club said it was aware of an incident on the concourse at the game and was ‘taking the matter very seriously.’

 

They confirmed a full investigation was already underway and would provide further updates in due course.

Lancashire Police has also confirmed they are looking into the incident.

The Seasiders lost the game 3-1 in front of only 1,196 fans at Bloomfield Road.


Our View

We’ve seen the video, and it doesn’t look great.

Stewarding is a difficult job, and all the facts and context need exploring before forming a reasoned opinion, but it appears from first viewing the steward took a cheap shot at the fan.

Having visited Bloomfield Road earlier this season as an away supporter my only criticism was the welcome could have been warmer and the match not so heavily policed.

It is a shame because there are many good things going on at the club after they finally got rid of the Oystons and fans deserve the upturn in fortunes they are getting under the management Simon Grayson and the ownership of Simon Sadler.

From my experience, I can only suggest they explore ways of improving positive engagement with travelling supporters, something that doesn’t have to detract from the atmosphere at the game.

It should also be noted that stewarding is still an issue at many grounds I visit during a season, and clubs should be continually looking to improve the training and calibre of people they put in a high vis jacket on matchdays.

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