Plans to move away fans to the upper tiers of the Sir Alex Ferguson have been abolished due to the fear of City fans “doing the Poznan” as it might cause the stadium to “flex”. I don’t know what they are worried about – they have to score to do the Poznan and they won’t be doing that at Old Trafford, right?
Old Trafford commander Chief Supt Mark Roberts stated that “stand movement, whilst not necessarily dangerous, could cause panic among fans”. He makes it sound like the stand would start swaying back and forth if people jumped up to celebrate – a slight hyperbole, I detect. If a multi-million pound football stand cannot handle a few thousand people jumping up and down, then it wasn’t built for purpose.
This is an opinion shared by United:
“We are surprised the police have chosen to raise this issue. We have an ongoing dialogue with the council. They put the stadium through a rigorous approval process every year and this issue has never been an area of concern for them.
“Given that they have the appropriate expertise in this area, it seems strange that the police would raise it.”
The Manchester Evening News got hold of the 15 page document through a Freedom of Information request which also raised fears that persistent standing could lead to fans falling over the edge, that police would struggle to contain uprisings due to the difficulty of reaching the area and that it would increase the risk of violence outside the ground.
Whilst I thought the idea that season ticket holders would have to give up seats that they may have held for a long time for this plan was ludicrous, I welcomed the idea that the Old Trafford atmosphere might make a move away from silent day-trippers and back to the days of “Attack, Attack, Attack” permanently reverberating off the walls. Looks like we might have to wait a bit longer.