Police shatter the image of well behaved rugby fans.
Rugby fans have always been quick to highlight the differences between themselves and football supporters, underlining the respect they demonstrate both in the stands and in the bars before and after games.
However it seems that the behaviour of fans outside stadiums is been brought into question by police in Cardiff, who criticised middle aged men for drinking too much and ‘think that they can behave any way they like’.
In an article published on Wales Online, one officer described these men as being a ‘disgrace’, and went so far as to say that they turned into ‘bullies’ on match days. Speaking before Wales played Scotland last weekend, Superintendent Andrew Morgan commented,
On any other day of the week, they will be perfectly law abiding family people who know how to behave.
Today they won’t listen. They won’t take advice or warnings. They will be a nightmare.
In short Morgan believed, ‘these middle aged men turn into drunken idiots’, some of whom bully railway staff in particular as they make their way from games. Consequently he maintained that,
I would like to film some of these people and, when they’re back in their three piece suit on Monday morning going off to work, play the tape back to them – because it’s a disgrace.
Putting the behaviour of these fans into context, Morgan claimed that rugby fans can more difficult to deal with than football supporters, who generally listened to police.
Football fans come in large numbers. They can be a problem, but we know where they are. Football fans will push the boundaries, but they will listen.
Although some supporters will completely disagree with Morgan’s sentiment, it would also be interesting to read the experiences of those living near grounds, bar staff and taxi divers on match days.
If they express a similar view, rugby fans as a whole need to highlight such behaviour and ensure that it will not be tolerated in future.
Alan Drumm, Pundit Arena