Over the past few days quite a few Villa fans have been asking MOMS what went on in L7 of the Holte End with the police and stewards seemingly ejecting the Brigada 1874 group of Villa supporters during the Villa vs Manchester United game on Friday night.

Several fans have also offered their eye-witness accounts to us and I have to say they all match the account below that the Brigada 1874 have detailed in their statement on the night’s events.

It’s not the first time Brigada 1874 have been targeted in situations that could have been avoided with better communication to fans and with a dedicated SLO (Supporter Liaison Officer) at the club. Also, the quicker safe standing is introduced, the better for everyone – the club need to get back on the front foot in lobbying for it.

 

Brigada 1874 statement regarding events at Aston Villa vs Man Utd

brigada 1874 badge

Brigada 1874 were targeted by police and stewards for the above match.

Many people witnessed the police filming us from the moment we entered into the ground, and whilst we recognise this is their prerogative, from the point of view of the group this can only be seen as an act that suggests we need to be viewed with suspicion.

Almost from kick-off the stewards were telling us to sit down and generally harassing us. They then told us they were unaware we had moved from our previous position in L8, which only suggests extremely poor communication between different departments at the club. One of the main reasons we moved from L8 was because of persistent seat blocking by the club’s ticketing department in that area, stifling the growth of the group.  We also felt a more central position nearer to the pitch would help us to grow as a group, and also enable us to influence the lower Holte as a whole into generating a greater atmosphere.

As a group who have entered into discussions with the club on numerous occasions, in order to ensure that any disturbance to other fans that may not enjoy the atmosphere we try and create so much is kept to a minimum, we feel let down by the club on this occasion.

The club have publicly stated blocks L7 and L8 were designated as ‘singing sections’. This surely means that anyone who has tickets in these sections should expect fans in these areas to be doing exactly that. Singing, creating an atmosphere, standing, supporting the team as loudly and colourfully as possible. This is precisely why Brigada 1874 chose to buy tickets in this area, and to be targeted by stewards and police for doing precisely what the area we were in was advertised for is, at best, poor communication between the club and the stewards it employs.

aston villa singing section
Aston Villa club website 19th March 2015

Our decision to leave the ground (and it was a decision made by the group, we were not ejected) was made because the stewards and police targeted one of our members and asked to ‘have a word’, when questioned whether this was a word or whether this really meant they were being ejected, the steward replied that it was indeed just to talk, but the police officer replied that they were being ejected. It must be said this seems to be underhanded tactics on behalf of the steward.

As a group we will not let members be singled out in this way so we made a decision to leave at this point (on approximately 60 minutes) and discussions continued in the concourse.

Brigada 1874 do not want to, and never have gone out to cause upset or issues for other fans, and we feel that since our inception in 2010 we have made great strides in our relationships with both other fans and the club itself.

Nevertheless, if the club and other fans truly want the atmosphere at Villa Park to be as loud and colourful as Brigada 1874 are attempting to create, then targeting us for doing just that will only have the opposite effect.

As an Ultras group we need to be in an area where other fans not only tolerate us, but get involved with us to help create an atmosphere all Villa fans can be proud of, and that will cause other teams and fans to take notice when they come to visit Villa Park.

UTV

Brigada 1874

 

For more on Brigada 1874 check out their forum 

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11 COMMENTS

  1. Football, as we all know has sold its soul to coporate big business. That’s the nature of capitalism and the global economy. Everything has its price. Now in my sixties I was a regular at Anfield in the late sixties and early seventies. We didn’t win anything at the time but the atmosphere was electric…..how it should be. It’s as though the big clubs no longer want the singing, shouting, exited fans. More fool them. What they fail to see is that most youngsters no longer attend live football. Their parents can’t afford it, week end, week out, let alone travel from one end of the country on Sundays or Mondays to suit the TV schedules.The situation in Europe is totally different where fans are still at the centre of it all. Rose coloured specs? Yes to a degree, but which is better. And don’t get me started on today’s news about Jermain Defoe’s search for a well paid slave who will have to do everything 24 hours a day….probably wiping his a**e. Well paid but probably less than JD earns in a week? Anyway Brigada all power to your elbow.

  2. As long as Brigada don’t harass, intimidate, assault or verbally abuse their neighbours they are OK by me. I am a senior citizen of over 50 years attending VP, I sit in DEL and was struck by how vocal the Lower Holte was on Friday. This is football, not golf, we are passionate about the club. Sky sells its packages on the back of crowd atmosphere and Villa will find they sell tickets on it as well.

  3. It’s obvious that the club don’t really want Brigada 1874. They want their money though and they want their colour and support, but it appears that this is conditional. They obviously don’t like some of the messages that they promote in their wonderful banners and flags. The “Sky stole the soul” message was not only factually true, but also witty and original, however the club is not going to support that given the amount of money it receives from the corporate giant. Unfortunately the most influential football fans these days (and they don’t even know it) are the ones watching it sat at home on pay per view.

  4. the bigger issue is the Supporter Liaison Offcier, who I understand has to be in place by UEFA regulations. Who is this and what is his-her role?

    Trevor Fisher.

  5. Sorry guys even though the essay below I don’t feel ive quite finished.

    Going back to last season, qpr away is shouting out to me to be written about. It was a midweek game on a horrid cold December night, for those who’ve been to loftus road know that £45 for a ticket Is a joke. But any how I paid it, and villa were useless that night losing 2-0 and not even putting up any sort of a fight. Enough to make anyone’s blood boil when you put those two facts together. However I had one of the best nights of my life with the villa faithful. Standing and singing untill our throats hurt for the full 90mins.

    Same scenario for me at arsenal away and Southampton away where we got absolutely turned over. Again no complaints from me as the fans made it worth while.

    I simply want that passion and atmosphere from away games transformed into the holte end. As do so many others. We’ve got a wonderful following it would be great to bring this back to villa park and work with the brigada not against them.

    The way I view brigada is they’re like all how villa fans feel deep down, they just aren’t afraid to show it in reality. Back them guys, again hopefully the club do to.. UTV

  6. Villa really need to sort the communication issues out and give Brigada (and other fans in general) a section of the Holte and let everyone aware of it including other fans (when purchasing tickets) stewards, police etc. Over a month ago when my friend and I were booking our tickets for the game, we purposely choose to be in the lower area of L7 so we could be close to Brigada and ourselves get involved in singing, bouncing etc etc.

    We’ve found in recent seasons, with respect, on the pitch we’ve been terrible. So what makes the travelling to home and away games are the Villa fans with their atmosphere and singing. As my friend and I will always look to stand and sing. The atmosphere for us drowns out the result and makes it all a good day out (we come from down south). So going back to the United game when Brigada strolled in we were over the moon to see them 2 rows down from us. The majority of fans back them. We had a few vacant seats on my row which were quickly filled when Brigada set up their flags and started singing. The club need to establish all of this and work with the fans not against us.

    I thought the way stewards and police handled the situation was shocking, really poor tactics to signal out one of the brigada lads knowing the rest of the following would react. I also think some other fan behaviour towards them was poor, I saw one angry male fan take a swing (early on in the game) at a brigada lad. No punishment was dealt to this man. But being open minded I don’t blame this man for his actions, I blame the club for not educating the fans on a) groups such as Brigada b) that lower L7 was being vacated by Brigada in the first place.

    Going back to the game the final third without Brigada made me angry and generally disappointed with Aston Villa. Just look at palace and how correct they’ve got it with their ultras. That just shows that it can be done and every party involved can be happy, I’m very much looking forward to my trip to Selhurst on Saturday, although I know I’ll be jealous when I look at their home end behind the goal all standing, bouncing, singing, chanting with their huge flags.

    With better communication I hope one day soon we can achieve this at villa park. I hear it too much from Villa that “fans are what makes this football club”. Well it’s about time they back this statement up and help us out!

    Clearly not enough has been done,

    Elliott watkins @watkinss_e

  7. Same happened in Doug Ellis Upper, Man U fans constantly trying to jump over to the away section being ignored and not ejected!

  8. and when a man u fan jumped up and shouted YES when they scored the stewards at the back of trinity upper not only failed to notice but did nothing when he was pointed out!

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