Football fans warned over behaviour ahead of weekend of games

As numerous football matches prepare to kick off this weekend, British Transport Police is warning fans over their behaviour.

During the course of the weekend there are number of high profile games throughout the nation. With matches from Glasgow to Perth, Kilmarnock and Inverness, fans will be travelling the length and breadth of the nation, with trains being a key method of transport.

Since the beginning of the Scottish Premier League this year, BTP has recorded a number of incidents which are directly linked to football matches.

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These include incidents of chanting sectarian abuse, violence, abusive behaviour and criminal damage. Behaviour like this will simply not be tolerated and this weekend of action will focus on deterring incidents and detecting offenders.

Police will be providing a high visibility presence at stations as well as on trains to and from the game and supporters are reminded that anti-social behaviour or disorder could result in a criminal record and football banning orders.

Throughout the weekend, BTP will continue to work closely with Police Scotland and ScotRail.

Leading the operation, Chief Inspector Davie Gray from British Transport Police, said: “With the Old Firm match on Saturday at Ibrox Stadium as well as a number of other high profile matches, this weekend will be busy.

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“Therefore, throughout the nation, spectators can expect to see a higher than usual presence from BTP officers on the rail network. My officers will be highly visible at train stations and will be increasing the number of on train patrols, escorting fans to matches.

“Our priority is to ensure that football fans get to and from the matches safely and without any problems. Fans who are out to cause trouble are not welcome on the rail network and we’ll look to take firm action against those individuals.”

If you need to get in touch with BTP over the weekend, remember you can report incidents by sending a text to 61016. Let us know what concerns you and officers will investigate.

CI Gray added: “If you see or hear something that concerns you then I would urge you to contact us as soon as possible. Send us a text to our discreet reporting service 61016 or call us on 0800 40 50 40. In an emergency, always call 999.”