Premier League approves one-year ban for pitch invasion

The Premier League announced on Wednesday that it will ban spectators who invade the field of play or use flares and other pyrotechnics in stadiums for at least a year.

Clubs from the top division of English soccer approved the sanction at an owners’ meeting on Wednesday. It will take effect immediately as part of a series of measures that seek to curb excesses by the fans.

The Premier added that the bans could include parents or companions of children who engage in such conduct. The veto applies to home and away games.

A series of incidents in the final stretch of last season in the Premier and other lower divisions raised alarm about stadium security.

In one of them, Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira kicked an Everton fan who was taunting him during a pitch invasion at Goodison Park. In another, Sheffield United captain Billy Sharp was headbutted in the face by a Nottingham Forest fan at the end of the promotion playoff. The Forest fan was sentenced to 24 weeks in prison.

It also approved improving screening of fans entering stadiums, increasing the number of sniffer dogs, and working with social media platforms to immediately remove videos showing fan misconduct.

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