A 2012 reader survey from SportsBusiness Journal had the following results when asked what facilities and teams should focus on to improve the fan experience (readers could choose three selections).
Wi-Fi Connectivity 53%
Parking/Traffic flow 45%
Concession Pricing 41%
Rowdy Fans/Drunkenness 38%
Concourses/Pedestrian Flow 18%
This shows how concerned fans are with rowdy fans, fan movement, and parking related concerns.
By Yusri Mohamed and Yasmine Saleh 1/26/13
PORT SAID, Egypt/CAIRO (Reuters) – At least 32 people were killed on Saturday when Egyptians rampaged in protest at the sentencing of 21 people to death over a soccer stadium disaster, violence that compounds a political crisis facing Islamist President Mohamed Mursi.
Armored vehicles and military police fanned through the streets of Port Said, where gunshots rang out and protesters burned tires in anger that people from their city had been blamed for the deaths of 74 people at a match last year.
The rioting in Port Said, one of the most deadly spasms of violence since Hosni Mubarak’s ouster two years ago, followed a day of anti-Mursi demonstrations on Friday, when nine people were killed. The toll over the past two days stands at 41.
The flare-ups make it even tougher for Mursi, who drew fire last year for expanding his powers and pushing through an Islamist-tinged constitution, to fix the creaking economy and cool tempers enough to ensure a smooth parliamentary election.
That vote is expected in the next few months and is meant to cement a democratic transition that has been blighted from the outset by political rows and street clashes.
The National Defense Council, which is led by Mursi and includes the defense minister who commands the army, called for “a broad national dialogue that would be attended by independent national characters” to discuss political differences and ensure a “fair and transparent” parliamentary poll.
The National Salvation Front of liberal-minded groups and other Mursi opponents cautiously welcomed the call.
THREATS OF VIOLENCE
Clashes in Port Said erupted after a judge sentenced 21 men to die for involvement in the deaths at the soccer match on February 1, 2012. Many were fans of the visiting team, Cairo’s Al Ahly.
Al Ahly fans had threatened violence if the court had not meted out the death penalty. They cheered outside their Cairo club when the verdict was announced. But in Port Said, residents were furious that people from their city were held responsible.
Protesters ran wildly through the streets of the Mediterranean port, lighting tires in the street and storming two police stations, witnesses said. Gunshots were reported near the prison where most of the defendants were being held.
A security source in Port Said said 32 people were killed there, many dying from gunshot wounds. He said 312 were wounded and the ministry of defense had allocated a military plane to transfer the injured to military hospitals.
Inside the court in Cairo, families of victims danced, applauded and some broke down in tears of joy when they heard Judge Sobhy Abdel Maguid declare that the 21 men would be “referred to the Mufti”, a phrase used to denote execution, as all death sentences must be reviewed by Egypt’s top religious authority.
There were 73 defendants on trial. Those not sentenced on Saturday would face a verdict on March 9, the judge said.
At the Port Said soccer stadium a year ago, many spectators were crushed and witnesses saw some thrown off balconies after the match between Al Ahly and local team al-Masri. Al Ahly fans accused the police of being complicit in the deaths.
Among those killed on Saturday were a former player for al-Masri and a soccer player in another Port Said team, the website of the state broadcaster reported.
On Friday, protesters angry at Mursi’s rule had taken to the streets for the second anniversary of the uprising that erupted on January 25, 2011 and brought Mubarak down 18 days later.
Police fired teargas and protesters hurled stones and petrol bombs. Nine people were killed, mainly in the port city of Suez, and hundreds more were injured across the nation.
Reflecting international concern at the two days of clashes, British Foreign Office Minister for the Middle East Alistair Burt said: “This cannot help the process of dialogue which we encourage as vital for Egypt today, and we must condemn the violence in the strongest terms.”
European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton urged the Egyptian authorities to restore calm and order and called on all sides to show restraint, her spokesperson said.
On Saturday, some protesters again clashed and scuffled with police in Cairo, Alexandria and other cities. In the capital, youths pelted police lines with rocks near Tahrir Square.
In Suez, police fired teargas when protesters angry at Friday’s deaths hurled petrol bombs and stormed a police post and other governmental buildings including the agriculture and social solidarity units.
Around 18 prisoners in Suez police stations managed to escape during the violence, a security source there said, and some 30 police weapons were stolen.
“We want to change the president and the government. We are tired of this regime. Nothing has changed,” said Mahmoud Suleiman, 22, in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, the cauldron of the 2011 anti-Mubarak revolt.
Mursi’s opponents say he has failed to deliver on economic pledges or to be a president representing the full political and communal diversity of Egyptians, as he promised.
“Egypt will not regain its balance except by a political solution that is transparent and credible, by a government of national salvation to restore order and heal the economy and with a constitution for all Egyptians,” prominent opposition politician Mohamed ElBaradei wrote on Twitter.
The opposition National Salvation Front, responding to the Defense Council’s call for dialogue, said there must be a clear agenda and guarantees that any deal would be implemented, spokesman Khaled Dawoud told Reuters.
The Front earlier on Saturday threatened an election boycott and to call for more protests on Friday if demands were not met. Its demands included picking a national unity government to restore order and holding an early presidential poll.
Mursi’s supporters say the opposition does not respect the democracy that has given Egypt its first freely elected leader.
The Muslim Brotherhood, which propelled Mursi to office, said in a statement that “corrupt people” and media who were biased against the president had stirred up fury on the streets.
The frequent violence and political schism between Islamists and secular Egyptians have hurt Mursi’s efforts to revive an economy in crisis as investors and tourists have stayed away, taking a heavy toll on Egypt’s currency.
(Additional reporting by Omar Fahmy, Peter Griffiths in London and Claire Davenport in Brussels; Writing by Edmund Blair; Editing by Mark Trevelyan)
Washington Post, January 22, 2013
ATLANTA — A 46-year-old man has been arrested in a stabbing near the Georgia Dome following the Falcons’ NFC Championship game loss.
Georgia Dome spokesman Jason Kirksey says James Lewis McCoy of Villa Rica was arrested Tuesday by the Georgia World Congress Center Authority Police Department. Information on McCoy’s charges was not immediately available.
Kirksey says the stabbing may have been over an argument about food during a tailgate party outside the Georgia Dome Sunday. Some initial reports indicated it came from a dispute between football fans. But Kirksey said neither McCoy nor the person stabbed attended the game.
The stabbing happened around 6:40 p.m. in a parking lot.
The 35-year-old person who was stabbed has not been identified. Authorities say he is in stable condition at Grady Memorial Hospital.
By Andrew Lu on January 15, 2013
The final score of the San Francisco 49ers’ victory over the Green Bay Packers may have been 45-31. But the scarier numbers may be 92, 29, and 62. Ninety-two for the number of people who were kicked out of the game. Twenty-nine for the number of arrests made. And 62 for the number of people who needed medical attention.
Across the bridge in Oakland, Raider Nation may get all the publicity for having rowdy and violent fans. But for those in the Bay Area, you probably know that it really isn’t that much safer at a 49ers game.
Fights frequently break out in the parking lot before the game, during the game in the stands, and after the game as people try to make their way home.
Of the 29 arrests, 25 were for public intoxication, reports the Associated Press. Two people were arrested for auto burglary, and two others were arrested following the game for a DUI.
Stadium medical staff attended to 62 fan injuries during the game, though the severity of the injuries was not reported.
The NFL is aware of problems with fan violence. Most incidents are alcohol-related and so most teams in the league make their last call before the fourth quarter. But just because you stop drinking 15 minutes before the game ends, this does not mean you’re sober.
Along with curbing alcohol sales, the NFL has also taken other measures like requiring ejected fans to pay $100 and take an online course before they’re allowed back into the stadium. The new policy adopted this year focuses on topics like alcohol abuse, anger management, and crude behavior.
A incident or two at a football game is expected. However, to have almost 100 people ejected and 29 arrested seems excessive. As the 49ers will be travelling to Atlanta next week and then possibly New Orleans for the Super Bowl, San Francisco cops can expect a break — until the next football season, that is.
Loucoumane Coulibaly , Alain Amontchi Tuesday 01 January 2013
About 60 people were crushed to death in a stampede outside a stadium in Ivory Coast’s main city of Abidjan after a New Year’s Eve fireworks display, the government said.
The incident took place near Felix Houphouet Boigny Stadium where a crowd had gathered to watch fireworks, emergency officials said.
One of the injured, speaking to Reuters at a hospital, said security forces had arrived to break up the crowd, triggering a panic in which many people fell over and were trampled.
LISBON (Reuters) – Ten people were crushed to death and 120 injured in the Angolan capital Luanda as they tried to enter an overcrowded stadium for a vigil organized by a Pentecostal church, the state news agency Angop reported on Tuesday.
Angop cited an emergency services spokesman as saying the victims, including four children, were crushed at the gates of the Cidadela Desportiva stadium, where the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God (IURD) organized a vigil on Monday night.
IURD is a Pentecostal Christian church created in 1977 in Brazil, where it has over 8 million followers, according to its own website. IURD says it is present in most countries of the world.
Ferner Batalha, IURD’s deputy bishop for Angola, said the vigil had been overcrowded.
“Our expectation was to have 70,000 people, but that was surpassed by far,” Angop cited him as saying.