SPFL boss Doncaster vows to protest alcohol ban in Scottish football

The SPFL boss admitted it was “regrettable” that Scottish football fans cannot enjoy a drink “as part of the game experience” as they can in other sports.

Currently, no alcohol may be sold to fans in the stadium during matches – there is limited space in the hospitality or pre-match lounges for fans to order a pint.

But Doncaster insists he will continue to push for a change in the laws as he lays out the impact of the current laws on attendance and safety.

He suspected some fans might choose not to attend matches because of the law and suggested the ban could lead to excessive drinking before matches and thus “sub-optimal” safety scenarios.

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Speaking on The Price of Football podcast, he said, “Since the 1980s, fans have been banned from drinking alcohol at all in most parts of the stadium.”

“From a Scottish point of view, I have great sympathy. We want to remove as many barriers as possible that prevent people from coming to the games and enjoying the gaming experience.”

“Other sports in Scotland allow fans to enjoy a drink as part of the game experience. So it is definitely unfortunate that this cannot happen in Scotland (at football matches).”

“I think from a safety and health perspective, the current ban on serving alcohol at matches actually creates an incentive for fans to choke on as many pints as they can at a local pub, then run to the turnstiles and try it out.” Getting in within 10 minutes of kick-off, which I don’t think is optimal from a safety and sound practice point of view.

“I would definitely like to see a situation in the future where fans can enjoy drinks at games like they can in England and across Europe as part of a fun day out.”

“We will certainly continue to lobby the authorities to ensure that this happens at some point in the future.”

Grace Reader

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