After years of debate and campaigns this summer will see the very real possibility of a foundation in which Championship and Premier League football can build on. The issue of standing at football will be debated on June 25th and with lower league clubs and Scottish clubs already doing it you would like to think this is the gateway for the rest.
Standing at football has long been an issue and it goes back many years to the old terraces and the danger of injury and crushing meant that football in the higher leagues in England it would be an all-seater affair. This has worked with huge success, that is undoubted. I think the issue here is that many fans prefer standing at games and if they want to then it should be made safe to do so. Both the Kop and the South Stand are great examples of an old stadium that has been modernised to an extent and although it still has many of the old features, seats with people standing isn’t ideal when we could just stand safely with a few weeks worth of work. The best example in British football is Celtic, the Glasgow side have a large area for safe standing and it works brilliantly, fans are able to enjoy the game whilst standing and create a great atmosphere. Elland Road doesn’t lack atmosphere but the idea of safe standing is very appealing.
The debate is that some fans obviously don’t want to stand at games. In the interest of Leeds United and Elland Road it would be pretty straight forward because two entire stands basically stand without any change to that for a few years. It would have to be regulated and fans would have to agree to the new plans but most would, in fact Leeds fans have been very vocal in supporting the campaign and we aren’t the only ones. It has gathered that much pace that parliament will now be forced to discuss an issue that only looks like having one outcome eventually. This may not be the time it happens but it’s coming because football in the higher leagues is becoming more commercialised than ever and the fans who go to games aren’t liking what they see. This could be a huge step in fans getting safe standing.