Is there really a difference to your personal experience at a game if you stand or sit to watch it? But it can make a huge difference to the supporter sitting behind you!
I`ve mentioned it before, but why do some fans think that they can stand throughout a match without upsetting others? At Derby, the tickets clearly stated that persistent standing is strictly forbidden. So, when the Rs fan sitting in front of me persisted in standing up, despite the fact that, in doing so, he hid the goal from not just me but others sitting behind me; he was asked politely (several times) to sit down by the Derby stewards.
And when he refused to do so, he was then (again very politely) given a warning. He was told that, if he did not sit down, he would be ejected from the stand. So what does the guy go and do? Sit down and enjoy the game, and let those around and behind him enjoy it too? No! Of course not!
He deliberately stood up, and continued to stand up, when there was absolutely no reason to (for example, a corner to watch, when everyone else stood up momentarily; or a brief chant that got us all on our feet). So, guess what? He got kicked out!
And what was his reaction and those of the people around him? Shock and disgust! But why? He was pre-warned on the ticket; he was warned again in the ground; and, more importantly, fellow QPR supporters were all shouting to him to sit down and not spoil their enjoyment – and he didn`t care at all. He actually started arguing with one man implying that that man was in the wrong!
Now, I know that most grounds turn a blind eye to standing in the very back of a stand – as the Derby stewards did today. There is always a small knot of fans who stand up in the last three or four rows. But it`s a small group and they don`t interfere with anyone around them. Some fans who want to stand go and join those at the back – and that`s fair enough! I`m talking here about people who stand in the middle or the lower part of the away section.
At Chelsea last season, I nearly had my head taken off – literally – by a fellow QPR fan who took great exception to me asking him to please sit down as none of us could see! It`s horrifying how selfish some supporters can be. Yes – selfish. That`s what it is! We all know that these days standing is not condoned. Yet, a selfish few persist in upsetting their own fans by standing up!
I admit to being glad that this particular guy was taken away. More fool him! If he had only done as asked, he would have been able to enjoy that amazing comeback that saw us claw a point out of defeat, as the rest of us did. I praised the Derby stewards for their cool and calm handling of this particular situation – assuring them that QPR fans were really not all like him! He harassed and harangued them mercilessly and they didn`t deserve his rude and aggressive behaviour – but nor did the rest of us.
Long may it continue that stewards carry out what they say they will. Maybe then those fans will learn! If you are asked to sit down, just do it – you`ll be doing yourself a favour – as well as the rest of us!
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