Letter:Football's new war zone

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From Mr Dominic T. Doherty

Sir: It is evident that the Football Association is unable to guarantee that only true football supporters will accompany the England international team abroad. I therefore feel that the Football Association of Ireland should ensure future matches between Ireland and England are restricted to home supporters only. After all, the FAI boasted proudly prior to this match that it could have sold the 46,000 available tickets two or three times over to Irish fans.

It now appears that Uefa will give the Football Association the go-ahead to host next year's European Championship finals. It would be appropriate for the England international team's right to participate in these finals to be removed at this stage. The Football Association should then be able to stage a trouble-free tournament free from the tension that would now inevitably be associated with each game involving England. Although critics would claim that this would be merely "giving in to the hooligans", I feel the prevention of serious injury or death of visiting supporters is a consideration which far outweighs all others.

Yours faithfully,

DOMINIC T. DOHERTY

Belfast

17 February

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