Football fan who racially abused Oxford United steward handed three year match ban

Nathan Birkett, 26, racially abused a steward after he was asked to stop smoking in the stand at the Kassam Stadium. Credit: ITV News Meridian

A football fan who racially abused an Oxford United steward has received a three year match ban.

Nathan Birkett, 26, racially abused the steward at the Kassam Stadium during a game between Oxford United and Wycombe Wanderers on September 11 last year.

Birkett, who was in the away section, started smoking which is against ground regulations.

When a steward approached Birkett and asked him to stop smoking, he was racially abused.

The fan was ejected from the stadium and handed over to police.

Nathan Birkett was removed from the stadium and handed over to police. Credit: ITV News Meridian

Birkett, of Amersham Hill in High Wycombe, pleaded guilty to a public order offence at Oxford Magistrates Court on Tuesday, May 3.

He was sentenced to a community order with 80 hours unpaid work, £100 compensation, costs of £40 and received a three-year football banning order.

Dedicated Football Officer, PC Jonathan Evans, said: “The victim in the case was working as a steward for Oxford United and Birkett racially abused him for simply doing his job.

"I welcome the court imposing a three-year Football Banning Order on Birkett and I would like to thank Oxford United and Wycombe Wanderers for their assistance in the investigation.

"Football matches should be a safe place for all people and Thames Valley Police will always deal with discrimination at football matches seriously and apply for Football Banning Orders where appropriate."