Euro 2020: What can be learnt from the Wembley chaos review?

England fans outside the ground during the UEFA Euro 2020 Final at Wembley Stadium
The behaviour of some individuals at Wembley on July 11 recklessly endangered lives.

Chaos at Wembley Stadium around the Euro 2020 England v Italy final when ticketless fans fought with stewards and pushed through barriers at the stadium before the match was described as a "day of national shame" by those leading an independent review.

The review found the chaos that unfolded around the Euro 2020 final between England and Italy could have led to deaths or serious injuries.

In light of the findings, the review made several key points and recommendations.

The general findings are:

  • The behaviour of some individuals recklessly endangered lives, and there were a series of crowd near-misses that could have led to serious injuries or deaths.

  • Planning and preparation for the final was hampered by unique conditions which created a perfect storm. Covid-19 restrictions had been eased but enforcement of public health measures created a “fundamental tension” with the need to effectively manage the crowds.

  • There was a collective failure by the organisers to plan for the worst-case scenario.

  • A loss of experienced stewards due to the pandemic left the stewarding operation vulnerable.

  • The absence of a fan zone removed a “key crowd management tool” and was likely a “very significant factor” in the chaos that ensued.

  • Insufficient enforcement of alcohol bans on public transport.

  • Policing did not do enough to mitigate the risk of ticketless fans, and officers were deployed too late.

  • Planning for the final did not match the national significance connected to the occasion.

ITV News Sports Editor Steve Scott on the 'unacceptable scenes of disorder' when fans stormed Wembley during the Euro 2020 final

Recommendations for national consideration are:

  • The government should consider a new category of matches with national significance.

  • The government should consider tasking the Sports Grounds Safety Authority (SGSA) to work with the FA and the event industry to undertake a review of stewarding.

  • The SGSA, the events industry, the police and local government should agree on a way forward on who is accountable for Zone Ex, also known as the ‘last mile’ around a football ground.

  • The FA should lead a national campaign to bring about a sea-change in attitudes towards supporter behaviours.

  • The government should consider strengthening the penalties for football-related disorder.