Luton Town release a statement condemning reports of inappropriate chanting during Liverpool game

Supporters could face a ban if found guilty of tragedy chanting
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Luton Town have released a statement regarding the reports of inappropriate chanting that were heard during the Hatters’ 1-1 draw against Liverpool at Kenilworth Road.

During the game, in which Tahith Chong’s strike was cancelled out by Luis Diaz’s stoppage time leveller, there were a small minority of Town supporters fans heard singing ‘always the victim’ chants during the second half, something that was highlighted by former Reds defender and Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher.

The chant has underlying connotations relating to the 1989 Hillsborough disaster in which 97 Liverpool supporters lost their lives.

Luton have released a statement about chanting heard during the 1-1 draw against Liverpool on Sunday - pic: Catherine Ivill/Getty ImagesLuton have released a statement about chanting heard during the 1-1 draw against Liverpool on Sunday - pic: Catherine Ivill/Getty Images
Luton have released a statement about chanting heard during the 1-1 draw against Liverpool on Sunday - pic: Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

Although conceding that might not have been widely known among their fanbase, the Hatters are urging such a song not to be repeated in the future, while also threatening to ban those who took part during the game on Sunday.

A statement released on Monday, said: “Luton Town Football Club is saddened by reports of inappropriate chanting towards Liverpool supporters during yesterday’s Premier League fixture at Kenilworth Road.

“The atmosphere inside the stadium was electric for the most part of a pulsating game, in which Rob Edwards’ side came close to pulling off one of the results of the season.

“While we do not wish to dampen the atmosphere at our home ground in any way, we are extremely disappointed that a small number of supporters soured the occasion with chants that may be interpreted as being in relation to tragedies that have affected Liverpool FC in the past.

“The Club condemns any kind of chanting that knowingly seeks to divide, and our safety and security team launched an internal investigation at the earliest opportunity.

“What has quickly become evident is that a number of people may have taken part without knowledge that the words used were in relation to the Hillsborough and Heysel tragedies, and we see the route to persuading supporters not to repeat these chants in future is through communication and education.

“On this basis we are reviewing CCTV and media footage from the match, and will speak to witnesses to identify individuals who may have taken part.

"Any perpetrators could face stadium bans and potential criminal prosecutions.

“If anyone has information and video evidence that will support the investigation, please email [email protected] with the subject ‘Inappropriate Chanting’.

“The eyes of the world are upon us in the Premier League, which we are all learning quickly to adapt to, and we have to remind our supporters that you are all ambassadors of the Club and it is your responsibility to behave according to the rules of the ground.

"This includes understanding the songs that cannot be sung in line with the Love Football, Protect The Game campaign.

“On behalf of all at Luton Town, we would like to wholeheartedly apologise to anyone offended by the chants heard during yesterday’s match, and will continue to work with supporter groups to educate fans on chants that are classed as tragedy abuse by football authorities, the police and CPS.”

The FA also released a statement, saying: “We are aware of the tragedy chanting during yesterday's Premier League fixture between Luton Town and Liverpool, and we are seeking observations from Luton Town and further detail from the Police.

"We strongly condemn chanting of this nature and will continue to work closely with our stakeholders across the game, including the clubs, leagues, fan groups and the relevant authorities to proactively address this issue."

Meanwhile, the Premier League added: “The Premier League condemns the tragedy-related chanting heard at yesterday's match between Luton Town and Liverpool.

“We continue to treat this as an unacceptable issue and are committed to addressing it as a priority.

"Those found guilty of tragedy-related abuse face an automatic club ban and will be referred to the police.”