Football Banning Orders could be dished out to hooligans ahead of the World Cup.
England fans who have caused a public disturbance at football matches will be denied the opportunity to attend Qatar’s upcoming World Cup, said UK’s Home Secretary Priti Patel.
The Sun, a British newspaper, reported that fans that attack or abuse any member of the public or engage in any online hate crime would be handed a ‘Football Banning Order.’
Speaking to The Sun, Patel voiced that the government will be rigorous in ensuring football matches are watched without any unwelcomed trouble.
“There is the very real threat to football hooligans of their passports being taken away from them for six weeks. Their liberty and freedoms are going to be restricted and they won’t be going to Qatar if they receive a Football Banning Order,” said Patel.
Football Banning Order
The Football Banning Order is an offense introduced by the UK’s Football Spectators Act in 1989 that can last between three and ten years and includes one or more conditions that the offender must obey or may face up to six months in prison.
The conditions of football banning violations can include bans from attending football matches at home or abroad and bans from going to a specific place or area for a period beginning two hours before a match starts until two hours after it finishes. In some cases, this can include public transport or entire towns.
The order can also see the surrender of passports before international football matches while also enforcing mandatory checking in at local police stations in the UK.
As the Premier League season kicks off, football banning orders have been expanded to encourage better behaviour at football grounds both domestically and internationally.
British fans are among the top purchasers of Qatar’s World Cup tickets as thousands of football fanatics flock to the Middle East.
England’s World Cup opening game will take place against Iran on Monday, November 21.
Patel’s comments come as Qatar unravels cooperation with world powers to ensure security at the World Cup.