West Ham United has once again claimed the top spot in football-related arrests, which reached a nine-year high during the 2022/23 season, as reported by the Home Office.
Hammers fans were arrested 89 times for football-related incidents during the 2022/23 season, including 27 for public disorder and another 23 for throwing missiles, which is by far the highest number in that category.
It is the second consecutive year that West Ham has led the charts for football-related arrests, despite claims that they have implemented improved and robust matchday systems to address such issues.
The 2022/23 season recorded a total of 2,264 football-related arrests in England and Wales, a concerning tally that represents the highest number since the 2013/14 campaign.
Those figures mark a significant increase, with incidents surging by 66 times compared to the previous season.
In addition to domestic incidents, the Home Office reported 123 arrests linked to overseas matches involving England and Wales.
101 of those incidents were related to the 2022 men’s World Cup in Qatar, while none were connected to the Women’s World Cup in Australia & New Zealand.
On a positive note, the Home Office revealed that the number of matches with reported incidents decreased by 6%, representing a reduction of 93 fixtures compared to the 2021/22 season’s total of 1,609.
Furthermore, the 2022/23 season saw a substantial increase in football banning orders, with 682 new orders issued, reflecting a 32% rise compared to the 2021/22 campaign, marking the highest number issued since 2010/11 (960).
Manchester United closely follow West Ham in terms of the number of arrests, with 83 reported cases.
Additionally, the Red Devils’ supporters held the highest number of banning orders, totalling 69. Championship side Millwall came in second with 66.
Last season witnessed several high-profile incidents, including a Tottenham fan receiving a four-year football banning order for assaulting Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale after January’s North London derby.
In the same month, a 15-year-old girl suffered severe injuries when struck on the head with a pint glass filled with coins during Manchester City’s Carabao Cup tie against Liverpool.
In May, a Leeds United fan who ran onto the pitch to confront Newcastle United manager Eddie Howe at Elland Road was sentenced to three months in jail and banned from attending games for six years.
As preparations for the 2024 European Championship in Germany continue, The Times reports that more than 600 new banning orders have been issued to football fans to minimise the risk of trouble during the tournament.
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