Beat around the Bush

By Sandy Lerman WHY are there always some fans at matches who just don t care about anyone else but themselves? I am sure we all recognise them – those who will persist in standing up through a match, regardless of whether anyone else is standing up, and

By Sandy Lerman

WHY are there always some fans at matches who just don't care about anyone else but themselves?

I am sure we all recognise them - those who will persist in standing up through a match, regardless of whether anyone else is standing up, and regardless of the fact that they may be right at the front of the stand they have tickets for!

At a recent away game at Crystal Palace, I was stuck behind two men of such selfish persuasion. And at Chelsea this week, I had a similar experience.


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While I am anything but a shrinking violet, I am left baffled as to why, in each case, when I politely asked the guys concerned to sit down as they were blocking not just my view but those of the young people sitting with me, I was given a resounding - and rude - "no"!

Eventually, at the Palace game, the men moved so that they could stand up without bothering anyone. At Chelsea, however, things could have become very nasty for me and my friends, as the young men in question were excessively rude and aggressive - first towards me and, later, towards my friends.

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There, the two fans in question were clearly looking for a fight against anyone they could pick on. One of them, who in fairness did apologise to me and sit quietly through the rest of the Carling Cup tie, admitted that they had arrived late to the game because they had been involved in a fracas with Chelsea fans outside the ground.

And when I ignored the other, as he started on me again at half-time, he turned on my friends instead as he was clearly in an aggressive frame of mind.

It obviously didn't matter to them that they were picking a fight with "one of their own". I am left wondering as to whether they were true Rangers fans or merely men who used football as an excuse for causing and participating in trouble.

Ninety-nine per cent of Rangers fans at Stamford Bridge came to support QPR as they battled heroically against Chelsea. These fans were singing and clapping all night and had a really great evening.

There were some who wanted to stand all game - but they selflessly stood at the back of the stand so they would not interfere or upset anyone else.

I applaud that: if you want to stand, fine - just please don't do so at the expense of other fans' enjoyment.

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