Two Cambridge United fans have been banned from every UK football ground for their part in matchday hooliganism across the country. The two were part of a hardcore group of at least 30 Cambridge fans who fought with rival supporters as they followed their team home and away over the last couple of seasons.
They took part in scraps at pubs, railway stations and around grounds against hooligans from Luton, Portsmouth, Mansfield, Lincoln, Stevenage and Southend. One was involved in 19 incidents of football-related disorder over the last two seasons, police said.
The other, who was given a football banning order in 2012 before following Cambridge, was involved in a earlier incident on the night that innocent U’s supporter Simon Dobbin was brutally attacked by Southend fans on March 21.
He was also linked to violence and disorder at The Dobblers pub in Sturton Street, on the day Portsmouth’s visit in February, the Duke of Cambridge in East Road, when the U’s hosted Stevenage, as well as when bitter rivals Luton took on CUFC in the FA Cup clash in January. In 2014 he also caused trouble at Wembley at the promotion tie with Gateshead and away at Portsmouth and Lincoln.
CUFC chairman Dave Doggett revealed earlier this year how he was trying to boot hooligans out of their club. He said this week: “The club is working closely with the police to identify the very small number of people who still use football as an excuse for anti-social behaviour.
“I am hopeful that this may discourage, particularly younger people, from becoming involved. The loss of freedom to attend any football matches, the exclusion from town centres on match days and the possibility of a criminal record will surely act as a wake up call.”
Inspector Steve Kerridge said the FBOs, which were approved by Cambridge magistrates, are “not applied for arbitrarily”. He added the two: “have been consistent features this season in organised activity by risk supporters. The decision by magistrates to impose a FBO in this case is a welcome one in the interests of safe and uninterrupted enjoyment of local football.”
The three-year football banning orders bar them from going near Cambridge United’s ground and much of the city centre on matchdays. It runs six hours before the U’s games and four hours after. They are also banned from attending every designated football match in the country and face travel restrictions during England’s games.