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Chesterfield’s Paul Cook claims football fans have ‘changed’ and want to ‘vent anger quickly’

Chesterfield’s Paul Cook claims football fans in general have ‘changed’ and want to ‘vent anger quickly’ amid recent troubles at matches.

Football-related arrests increased by nearly 60% last season compared with the last full year before the pandemic, official figures reveal. See more on that HERE.

Home Office data, which confirms concerns of an increase in disorder at matches across England and Wales, shows that 2,198 arrests were made in the 2021-22 season, 59% higher than in the 2018-19 season.

The number of pitch invasions rose by 127% to 441 incidents, while the number of hate crime incidents rose to 384, an increase of 99%.

The data shows that there were incidents reported at 1,609 of the 3,019 matches played over the course of last season – equating to 53% of all matches.

The most reported type of incident was the illegal use of pyrotechnics, with 729 games seeing incidents reported, while 561 incidents involved throwing missiles, the data shows. A further 444 incidents involved public order or antisocial behaviour incidents.

Of the 2,198 football-related arrests reported last year, just over a third were for public disorder (36%), while a fifth (20%) were for violent disorder.

There had been a downward trend in football-related arrests since the 2010 to 2011 football season, the Home Office noted – a decrease of more than half (-55%) from 3,089 in the 2010 to 2011 season to 1,381 in the 2018 to 2019 season.

Chesterfield manager Paul Cook explained, as per Derbyshire Times: “Football is so current, every game gets dissected now, people make assumptions so quickly, good and bad, that is the nature of the game we are in.

“As a manager I have always been more progressive with my thoughts about the game. I look back to see why we have not played well, why have we not functioned, why have we conceded goals etc.

“I am very much into performance. I think if you are playing well, the reality is you will be fine. If you are not playing well, and we probably have not been playing well since Yeovil, the reality is you will find yourself in a bit of trouble.

“The last two days have been spent on video analysis, watching clips over, making lads appreciate how hard you have to work to win games, that is with the ball and without the ball.”

Some boos were aimed from the home fans after trailing 3-0 against Dagenham & Redbridge by half time on Tuesday night, which Cook understands.

He added: “Our fans are absolutely fantastic. One of the reasons why I came about was because I felt I owed them something, because I felt I owed the club something. All I can highlight to our supporters, at three-nil down, I am sure you can imagine how unhappy I am as well.

“Our supporters are terrific and our job is to make our fans happy. 100 per cent I am on their side of that.

“This is not about our fans, this is about football fans in general getting disgruntled quickly.”

“Fans have changed, whether we like it or not,” he said.

“People say it is social media, people say it is a million different things.

“Now a lot of fans just want to vent anger quickly.

“For us the other night at half-time there was a little bit of discontent. We are three-nil down, I 100 per cent get it, but we have got to stay with what we are trying to.

“Your supporters are the blood of your football club, they keep you going and they are so important.

“I am not criticising our fans in any way, shape or form. I am just trying to highlight that we are a new team, we have been through a difficult period now for three or four games now, possibly longer than that, and within that we are doing okay.”

Paul Cook has already been booked three times this season in the games against Notts County, Southend and Yeovil. The Spireites have however seen two of those have been successfully overturned on appeal.

Cards can be brandished to managers for inappropriate language or gestures towards match officials, kicking or throwing water bottles, sarcastic clapping, waving imaginary cards, entering an opponents’ technical area and conflict with supporters.

This is how Twitter users reacted as Chesterfield’s Paul Cook claims football fans have ‘changed’ and want to ‘vent anger quickly’…

@spireflyer: From our point of view i think it is the league we are in, everything is so poor about it…

@tom_scott2: Shouldn’t fans just behave?

@TinsleyP: Agree, the despair felt by teams like us, County, Wrexham, Southend, Oldham etc when we see what’s happened to our teams just leads to frustration. It is indeed the hope that kills you. I don’t boo though, I think the silence is more deafening.

@Danny_h_2005: didn’t understand the boos at all, doesn’t achieve anything. I know we was playing awfully but booing just makes it worse

@mattybarbs: Knee jerk reactions to a couple of bad games is mad these days (some town fans included). Like they think they’ve got a right to win every game unchallenged.

@spireflyer: Lol Cookie is on three yellows has he forgot that…

@kev4599: Hes got it spot on as usual there has been a complete over reaction yes we’ve been well below standard you cannot play to that standard every week unfortunately it is has come when we have got a few more fans back to support us and they just see the poor performances

@CfcCrookes: Definitely far to quick to get on their backs Tuesday night

@SpireLegends: He’s right. There is a section of support at every club that are just big babies.

@t_wxbster: When I was leaving at full time I heard boos. Was that at the players or the ref? If it was at the players then cmon, it was a shit performance but we should still support the lads.

@piehard: @1866 Paul Cook put it so eloquently it’s the fans fault. The fans have been stuck in this wretched league 5 years. They want out. They moan as do I on social media because you can. Better than marching with your feet though.

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