Last year Millwall won the Family Club of the Year award but fans still chant, “No one likes us.” Some of them probably deserve their reputation as hooligans but the majority go to watch the football not to fight. Many feel that their reputation is not deserved and one fan, Bill May, blames the BBC. Here’s the quote:
‘May believes the clubs reputation was undeserved and that such hooliganism and violence took place at many other football grounds across the country at the time. A particular sore point is a 1977 BBC Panorama programme on football hooliganism: “I think the BBC just wanted to do a film about hooliganism, and they came to Millwall, because it’s not too far from the BBC.” May believes the programme misrepresented the vast majority of Millwall fans.”’
Regardless of whether or not their reputation is deserved, there will probably be a large police presence for the game tomorrow. I hope all those police will know something about the research work of Dr Clifford Stott on policing crowds without force and be aware that aggressive policing can cause trouble. I wrote about policing at the away game at the Den on the Blues Trust website. I hope that the West Midlands Police will do a better job of keeping things calm.
I’m also hoping that Blues win.