Sheffield United warned over possible stand CLOSURES at Bramall Lane after being forced to stop selling tickets for Kop - here's why

Sheffield United have STOPPED selling matchday tickets for the Kop stand at Bramall Lane, after “issues” with fans not sitting in their allocated seats and congregating at the back of the stand.
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United announced the measure in a statement this afternoon, while season ticket holders on the Kop were also contacted by email. The club say that Sheffield City Council and the Sports Ground Safety Authority (SGSA) have both asked United to intervene “on matters of safety within the Kop” before “they take further action”, which is explained as blocks of seats – or even a full stand – potentially being closed.

The move will likely have a knock-on effect for United’s finances, with no matchday tickets being sold in the stand. Even if fans move elsewhere, there are not a great deal of spare seats available – with United topping over 30,000 fans at Bramall Lane for their last home game against Norwich.

Sheffield United fans on the Bramall Lane Kop - George Wood/Getty ImagesSheffield United fans on the Bramall Lane Kop - George Wood/Getty Images
Sheffield United fans on the Bramall Lane Kop - George Wood/Getty Images
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The club statement read: “For some time there has been issues with supporters not sitting in the seats that correlate with their ticket as well as standing at the rear of the Kop stand, and the club has attempted measures with the safety of supporters at the paramount of any decision-making.

“As a football club, Sheffield United work under a safety certificate, issued by Sheffield City Council. Additionally, in accordance with the Football Spectators Act 1989 Act, The Sports Grounds Safety Authority (SGSA), the UK Government's advisor on safety at sports grounds, is responsible for issuing and ensuring compliance with licences to admit spectators to sports grounds to watch designated football matches.

“Both the council and SGSA have been in contact asking the club to intervene on matters of safety within the Kop before they take further action. Should safety procedures not be followed, blocks of seats - or a full stand - can be closed. It is unfortunate that this approach is fast becoming a reality and the repercussions will affect a significant number of supporters.

“The club's safety team has made numerous attempts to resolve the situation, including marked signage, terms of business and clearly displayed ground regulations, along with increased stewarding and safety procedures. It has now been agreed that no matchday tickets will be sold for the Kop stand for the foreseeable future to enable the club to review operations.

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“Sheffield United is dedicated to ensuring Bramall Lane is a safe and enjoyable environment for all supporters, and through this communication appeal to supporters to sit in the seats that are clearly marked on their ticket and to desist with standing before further measures are forced upon the club.

“We thank supporters in advance for their understanding and co-operation.”

The announcement understandably stirred debate amongst fans. Sean White posted on Twitter: “Let’s be clear before people blame the club. It's not the club! The latest example of how South Yorkshire clubs are policed/governed more strictly than anywhere else, ridiculous.”

Joel Beighton added: “People have been stood up on there since seats were put in in the early 90s. There’s never been any incident occur whatsoever, so I’m not sure what the issue is.”

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