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Beer at football

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September 28, 2023, 10:41am

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My mate, whom I have known for yonks, and is a regular away day man, says he is not going to anymore away matches due to the withdrawal of alcohol in our parts of the ground. He is a kind and gentle man, but loves the meet and talk that you get when you can have a beer before -  and at half-time at away games. He said that he will not be dictated to what he can and cannot do in his life now (mid sixties).

Now I know that some people can spoil it for others when off their heads and are usually 'gone' before the game anyway, but surely this is painting us all with the same brush and wholly discriminate? Anyway, Town have now lost a loyal away follower because of this. Thoughts?

'I walked in the dressing room. The window was open and I thought that a sea fret had got in. Then I saw smoke billowing from a pipe in the corner of the room...it was my centre-forward. He looked seven stone wet through. He went on to score thirty-odd goals that season.' Lawrie McMenemy on encountering the legend that was Matt Tees.
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September 28, 2023, 11:17am

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I'm with him on this, there's far too much control being imposed on us these days wether by the rules themselves or the power mad minions who delight in enforcing them whilst wearing their uniforms, badges and body cameras.

It's always been like it but has got much worse since covid gave them them their unshakable belief that they rule you totally.
It's the same everywhere, from shop workers right up to government ministers and it will never go away, it will only get worse.

Going back to the original post, I don't care if I can't get a drink inside a football ground, because at away games I prefer pre match and post match drinks in a proper pub talking balderdash with my mates but it annoys me that others might have that choice taken away.

Not everyone has the luxury of hours to mooch around a town pre match, some get out their car, off a coach or train and straight into the ground where they rely on the catering supplied.

I know some will say "If you can't do without a beer for a few hours.." but that's not the point is it?
It's not needing a beer, it's wanting a beer, there's a difference.

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September 28, 2023, 3:16pm

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Firstly if people can’t go a couple of hours without a beer and that makes attending an away game in a stadium where the facilities don’t allow alcohol to be served unbearable then that’s a bit sad really (i.e. like behind the goal at Bradford where there is no suitable and safe area to drink where you can’t see the pitch). Obviously i exclude anyone with addiction from that.

However it’s about time there was a trial run of what happens when you are allowed to consume alcohol in view of the pitch (in the stand).

The idea that it would mean people would drink more and would lead to increased disorder seems flawed to me and always has.

If anything I think a lot of supporters would buy their beer and go and find their seat in the stand and drink it there and not end up having 2, 3 or more drinks before the match as they are forced to drink near the bar.

League 1 or 2 might be the perfect place for an extended trial run.
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September 28, 2023, 4:32pm

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It could also lead to some of the socially inept that follow Town end up showering other people with beer, not nice. This is the problem with some children allowed new toys they tend to break them very quickly
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September 28, 2023, 5:59pm

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Be lucky you can have a beer at Blundell Park at all.

In Scotland alcohol is banned in all stadiums on matchdays, exceptions for corporate hospitality. Although Scotland does seem to have an anti-alcohol rhetoric recently with the minimum unit pricing etc. Can have one at the rugby though! I think they've been running a trial with Celtic but banned other than that.

Doesn't make much sense as folk just get loaded beforehand. Even doing 12pm kick-offs to combat pre-drinking in pubs before they open on Sundays (and shops only sell between 10am-10pm daily) doesn't make much difference!

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September 28, 2023, 6:21pm

Elemér Berkessy
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I've been to quite a few games in Germany where they're fine with supporters drinking beer in the stand. Never got doused with any while in the home end at Union Berlin on any of my three visits (or at Viktoria Berlin and SV Lichtenberg in the lower leagues either), but when I ended up in the away end with a load of Werder Bremen fans against Dynamo Dresden (who unexpectedly thrashed them 3-0) they started kicking off and throwing beer around.

I would really like to be able to have a pint at my seat while watching town but I dunno if the trade off of getting potentially soaked because some coked up buffoon has lost his rag and flung a half full pint over his fellow supporters is worth it. In conclusion: a difficult one.

gary jones
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September 28, 2023, 8:33pm
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Personally I love a good beer, I am too fed up with the control at games where bars are closed etc, yes I appreciate some people have too much and cause trouble but the vast majority like myself can handle their alcohol and will not go over their limit, I don't see what not being allowed to drink in view of the pitch is achieving as most fans who will cause trouble will already be intoxicated before the game as they would have been in pubs etc, likewise they would just drink behind the stand anyway and end up having more as the bar is in close proximity to where they are drinking!

So in summary closing bars and not being allowed to drink in view of pitch is in my view counter-productive and does not actually achieve anything
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September 28, 2023, 10:36pm

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Football fans have been treated like 2nd class citizens for years . It's time we all stood up and protested.
Peacefully of course.


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September 29, 2023, 6:30am

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I really don’t se the issue with allowing people to drink in their seats. We’re about the only country left that doesn’t allow it. Football supporters are treated like scum by some police forces and I genuinely believe it must be the only business that treats its customers with contempt.

These ideas that people will throw beer and you’re surrounded by coked up idiots is an odd one. If that was the case, there’d be issues every game…coked up idiots are still coked up idiots whether they can drink in their seat or not.

Having stood on several curvas in Italy, I’ve never been covered in beer and they’re jam packed. Perhaps once when the winning goal to seal promotion at Hellas went it but to some degree, that was understandable.

If you were able to drink in your seat it minimises this ‘down it quick’ mentality you get at half time and similarly, especially at away games, the same type approach pre game.

The inconsistent approach to drinking at sport but also the inconsistent approach at dealing with fans is part of the problem. For a country that is very open about drinking alcohol, we have a very weird approach when it comes to football, especially a sport that’s monetised the hell out of everything.

If they’re so bothered about people getting drunk, we’ll low alcohol like they do in some German stadiums…

'the poor and the needy are selfish and greedy'...well done Mozza
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September 29, 2023, 11:38am
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There's a part of me that really objects to the criminalisation of football fans.  It pisses me off seeing decent people just herded about like cattle and mandated where they can go, when they can leave and then getting cattled back onto a train regardless.

But then there's also this acknowledgement that the minority of people just ruin it for everyone else.  Promotion winning scenes or not, I don't really fancy getting soaked in Carling because someone simply has to have a pint during the game.  Predictably you know that someone will just launch a pint because they can and for no other real reason.

It's sad.  But until everyone behaves, the majority will always be punished.  Or at least I should say the authorities will always have that justification for treating the majority like scum.
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