SOCCER fan Simon Burluraux faces a ban from the game he loves – after failing to handle Somerset’s famous cider.
The Huddersfield Town supporter – who has also coached soccer teams – is likely to be banned from his own club after turning up at an away match drunk and shouting abuse in front of families queueing for tickets.
South Somerset Magistrates heard Burluraux, who works for Kirklees Council as a housing officer, turned up for his team’s evening away fixture at Yeovil’s Huish Park after downing several pints of local cider.
He then shouted at one of the ticket officers: “You’re f***ing crap and you know it.”
Despite being warned about his behaviour he continued to be abusive and at one stage even threatened to smash the window of a car parked nearby.
He was eventually arrested by police and appeared before South Somerset Magistrates where he admitted trying to enter a designated sports ground while drunk on January 27.
Prosecutor Donna Newton-Smith said that before kick-off a member of the public reported that a male was causing problems near the ticket office.
“The defendant was pointed out and he was wearing a T-shirt while standing in the pouring rain and was shouting abuse at other fans,” she said.
“There were about 20 adults and children standing nearby queueing for tickets and when he was asked by a football official to join him in a private area he refused so was given a public order warning.
“At the time Burluraux was clearly drunk and continued to be abusive and at one stage said that if he was not allowed in to see the match he would smash the window of a Range Rover parked nearby.”
Miss Newton-Smith added that a civil application would be made in due course by the police solicitor for a football banning order to be imposed upon the defendant.
Defending solicitor Gareth Webb said that Burluraux, 34, of Mitre Street, Huddersfield, held a respected position with Kirklees Council as a housing officer and was also a prominent fundraiser for Huddersfield Town.
“He has also coached the club’s under 14s and under 16s women’s teams and regularly supports the club which is a big part of his life,” he said.
“On the day in question he travelled down with friends in a van to watch the match and when they arrived went to a local pub.
“He drank cider all afternoon and found its effects were far more powerful than he expected and accepts he was drunk by the time he went to the ground and was singing abusive chants.”
He said Burluraux wanted to apologise to everyone at the football club for the disturbance he caused and the subsequent application for as football banning order would hit him and his family hard.
The magistrates imposed a 12-month conditional discharge on Burluraux and also ordered him to pay £60 costs.
In sentencing him they said they could empathise with his situation and that he could be made subject to a banning order – and advised him to keep off the cider.