POLICE today promised to get tough with soccer yobs as a new football season kicked off.
Officers in West Yorkshire pledged to hand out banning orders on supporters who misbehave.
Their warning follows a court case yesterday in which the last member of an eight-strong gang of York City supporters responsible for damage and disorder in a Leeds city centre pub received a three-year banning order at Leeds Crown Court.
West Yorkshire Police’s Football Banning Unit is one of the most proactive teams in the country, and has secured a total of 58 banning orders since it was launched in 2008.
There are 30 banning orders in force for Huddersfield Town fans – including some imposed after the infamous “Battle of Waterloo” when Town and Millwall fans clashed in Wakefield Road.
Chief Supt Mark Milsom is responsible for the Football Banning Unit.
He said: “The vast majority of people attending matches are true supporters who want nothing more than to enjoy themselves by cheering their team on to victory.
“It is important that we act to put a stop to any crime or anti-social behaviour, not just because of the impact it has on other supporters but also because of the wider impact on our clubs, which we enjoy a strong working relationship with.
“Anyone who becomes involved in crime, anti-social behaviour, or disorder connected to matches within West Yorkshire can expect a Football Banning Order.”