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Manchester United consider 'song sheets' to help improve 'quiet' atmosphere at Old Trafford

Jose Mourinho, the United manager, has recently complained that Old Trafford is 'too quiet'

Mark Critchley
Northern Football Correspondent
Wednesday 21 March 2018 11:36 GMT
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Manchester United implemented a 'singing section' at Old Trafford four years ago
Manchester United implemented a 'singing section' at Old Trafford four years ago (Getty)

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Manchester United are discussing measures to improve the atmosphere at Old Trafford, including handing out ‘clean’ song sheets to match-going supporters.

Jose Mourinho, the United manager, recently complained of Old Trafford being too “quiet”, unfavourably comparing its atmosphere with Portsmouth’s Fratton Park.

The subject was raised at United’s most recent fan forum last month, where the club announced plans to hold a consultation process and survey fans on “what ‘atmosphere’ means to you”.

One forum member present asked whether ‘clean’ song sheets could be printed in the matchday programme, on the club’s website and distributed to supporters attending Old Trafford.

The club said this was one measure that could be looked into for future games, having admitted that the atmosphere at Old Trafford is “a subject the club takes very seriously.”

A designated ‘singing section’ was introduced in Old Trafford’s J and K stands at the start of the 2014-15 season in a bid to improve the matchday atmosphere.

For last Saturday’s FA Cup sixth round tie with Brighton and Hove Albion, vocal groups of supporters were allocated tickets in L stand, which is usually Old Trafford’s designated away end.

The Manchester United Supporters’ Trust hailed the trail as a success, with visiting manager Chris Hughton commenting on United’s “noisy” support.

However, difficulties raised by relocating away fans and obligations to season ticket holders elsewhere in the ground prevent an L Stand singing section from being permanently implemented.

After the victory over Huddersfield Town on 3 February, Mourinho described the 75,653-capacity Old Trafford as a “quiet” stadium.

“It's not Portsmouth,” he said, when asked to explain his comments. “I remember Portsmouth - such a small stadium, the atmosphere was absolutely incredible.

“In here, the atmosphere is a bit quiet and there is not very [much enthusiasm]. But the players like to play at home.”

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