Southampton have issued a statement on their official website outlining why supporters should refrain from wearing club colours when the Saints take on Portsmouth this Tuesday.
Well, ahead of the heated derby this Tuesday, Southampton have taken steps to ensure that their supporters remain safe while visiting Fratton Park for the Carabao Cup tie.
The two south coast clubs haven’t played each other since a 2-2 draw in the Championship back in 2012, but the Carabao Cup has thrown up a chance for this historic rivalry to come back into the spotlight.
Southampton and Portsmouth have a strong distaste for each other dating back years, The Guardian believing the hostility truly emerged back in the 1960s.
Per The Sun, police have actually advised the referee to ignore FIFA’s ruling that players leave the pitch at the nearest touchline so as to avoid potential crowd trouble.
Thus, the Saints’ statement is a sensible one.
It was only a matter of days ago when Italian journalist Tancredi Palmeri told talkSPORT that Liverpool fans should not “show off” their colours in Naples ahead of the Champions League clash against Napoli.
Even with that warning from a respectable journalist, a Liverpool fan still ended up collapsing inside the Stadio San Paolo having sustained head injuries after an unprovoked attack – whether or not they were wearing club colours is unknown.
Of course, fans should never feel scared or threatened to wear their club’s colours at a football match, but there are some games where common sense should prevail over fandom.
Southampton taking steps to remind their fans of that makes all the sense in the world.