A bill of £1million landed at South Yorkshire Police HQ at the end of the last season for overtime for officers covering football matches in the county.
The force policed 145 matches in total, leaving an overtime bill of £1,009,490 while an extra £403,977 was spent on drafting in officers from other forces on matchdays.
Football clubs contributed £1,049,102 to the cost of policing last season’s games in South Yorkshire, leaving the force with a £562,303 shortfall to fund from the public pot.
These latest eye-watering figures have re-ignited the debate on who should fund the cost of policing football matches. The police or the football clubs?
Let us know what you think of some of the arguments put forward by our readers by commenting below.
Noel (@dog_of_flame) still think the onus should be on supporters to behave properly
Philip Bradish (@BradOwl) some games especially midweek when there’s very few visiting fans don’t need policing
Duncan Jackson (@duncanjackson80) no need for all that, police just want the overtime. It’s in their interests to hype up the potential for trouble.
Richard Wid (@RichardWiddison) Absolutely silly numbers of police and stewards at matches! Cut back on numbers and save money.
Ashley Glen Behan (@saxilbyblade) Who assess the risk and need to have that amount? Somebody more qualified than me or you in such things, most probably...
David Kirkham (@DavidKirkham3) The first question should be do we need them all? So many stand around doing nothing week in week out.
John Blade Critchley (@johnlcritchley) No it would open the floodgates for more claims by the police. Inside the ground - yes. Outside - no.
Scott Wilkes (@scottwilkes88) ridiculous amounts of police at most games. Clubs should be able to rely on stewards for 75‰ of games.
Mark Hope (@owls_4life) If clubs should foot the bill then they should also be able to use other means & determine appropriate levels
Daryl Slinn (@darylslinn) Of course they should. Our rates pay for the police to control football matches.
Colin Pears (@jaguarxf) Simple - Charge the club per bobby. If they decide to put admission up by £1 per head that should cover it.
Tories tell Porkies (@Peter__Jackson) no more trouble makers at footy than an average saturday night out, We’ve moved on from the 80’s
Craig Nicholson (@CraigSWFC) Clubs should help foot bill but police should stop treating all football fans as criminals = complete overkill
Dave Clarke 1-4 (@Athersstylist) i think all football fans need to grow up and behave when going to and leaving grounds. Unlikely though.