Spurs Supporters Have A Right To Protection In Europe

After the infamous riot at the FA Cup quarter-final match between Luton Town and Millwall, senior representatives of the Football Association were summoned to Downing Street to discuss the matter with the Prime Minister. ‘What are you going to do about your hooliganism?’, asked Margaret Thatcher, perhaps mindful of the extent to which divide and rule can be a useful tool for a politician. Ted Croker, the secretary and chief executive of the Football Association, replied, ‘We don’t want this made public, but these people are society’s problems and we don’t want your hooligans in our sport, prime minister.’ It was a risky policy to say this to a politician who may have been at the point of banning professional football altogether – it is perhaps instructive that Croker was subsequently the first person leaving such a senior position within the FA not to receive a knighthood – and it might also be argued that, at that particular time, it might have been unwise of somebody from the FA to be trying to fight back in the way Croker did, but he did, in his comment, touch on a fundamental truth about the relationship between football and society in a broader sense. To a point, football is merely a reflection of the society within which it exists, though politicians, for whom this is an obviously uncomfortable truth, will usually...

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