Football-related arrests were up 59% during the 2021/22 season, data recently released by the government shows. This led to 516 new Football Banning Orders, with the biggest offenders being supporters of Millwall, Leicester City and Everton.

If you are arrested at a football match and charged with criminal behaviour, contact the defence lawyers here at Ashmans Solicitors. We can take your call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We also offer free police station representation.

Common causes of arrest at football matches

Of the 3,019 football matches played during the 2021/22 season, incidents were reported at more than half of them (53%, to be exact). This means reported incidents were up by 60% compared to 2018/19, which was the last full season before Covid restrictions came into effect.

The three most reported types of incidents were:

  • Pyrotechnics
  • Throwing missiles
  • Public order or anti-social behaviour

There were also 441 pitch invasions.

The data shows that around 70% of fans arrested last season were aged between 18 and 30 years old.

What are the penalties?

Those who are arrested at a football match may be prosecuted for their criminal behaviour. If you are found guilty, you could face a custodial sentence, depending on the offence and the severity of the crime.

You can also face a Football Banning Order, which can last for between three and 10 years. Even relatively minor anti-social behaviour can result in a ban, severely curtailing your involvement in future sporting events.

Due to recent legislative changes, Football Banning Orders can also be issued for racial abuse or other hateful hostility, including where it occurs online.

Speak to our lawyers now

You must seek early legal help if you face an investigation or prosecution for any football-related incident. The laws around Football Banning Orders are particularly complex. The legislation is often misunderstood by prosecutors and some defence lawyers who do not have the necessary experience.

At Ashmans Solicitors, our criminal defence lawyers are well-versed in football-related criminal prosecutions. We can defend you throughout proceedings.

Call us on 0333 009 6275. We are available to take your call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

You can also email us on or complete our Free Online Enquiry Form and we’ll be in touch soon.