Devoted Middlesbrough fan banned from stands after admitting crime at Derby County match

30/06/22. Sean Allen, 35, of Glendale Road, Acklam, who has been banned from Middlesbrough FC games. Gazette Media.
Sean Allen, who appeared at Teesside Magistrates' Court on Thursday 30 June. Credit: Gazette Media

A Middlesbrough FC fan who has been to more than 1,000 matches has been banned from the stands for three years.

Sean Allen, 35, has supported the club since he was six years old, will miss out on watching his club from the stands after admitting a charge of public disorder.

Allen, of Glendale Road in Acklam, pleaded guilty to a Section 5 Public Order offence, using threatening, abusive or insulting behaviour, when he appeared before Teesside Magistrates' Court this week.

He was one of 13 men and a 17-year-old boy due to appear in court following reported clashes at a Middlesbrough match against Derby County in February.

Gurjot Kaur, prosecuting, told the court the fans from the two teams appear to have a hatred towards each other and many incidents of disorder broke out on the day.

She said: "There was a heavy police presence and Cleveland Police even requested back up from other forces, including North Yorkshire and Durham."

She said Allen got himself involved with other fans who were shouting towards the rival fans and offering a fight. She said the defendant has no previous convictions at all and is of previous good character.

Teesside Magistrates' Court, where 35-year-old Sean Allen appeared. Credit: Google Maps

Daniel Burke, defending, said his client admitted he acted incorrectly and regretted it ever since.

He said: "He has reacted wrongly to goading and abuse from a separate set of fans. He has admitted the public disorder and that he got carried away in something that he shouldn't have.

"He said it was a very tense situation. Mr Allen describes it as the most tense football match he has ever been to. Mr Allen has become involved and shouted some untoward things, it is completely out of character. It is not something he would ever do again or has ever done before."

Mr Burke said the most significant punishment for the Amazon worker is that he will not be able to watch his team.

He said: "He has been a season ticket holder since the age of six. He has attended in excess of 1,000 football matches."

The solicitor said his client is also a regular England team follower and has 25 caps from the England Supporters' Club, which are loyalty points for attending games.

He added he had already bought his Middlesbrough FC season ticket and paid to follow England in the World Cup later this year.

Allen, a single father, was fined £366 and ordered to pay £85 costs and a £37 victim surcharge. He was given the minimum term football banning order of three years.

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