Nine banned from Bloomfield Road

NINE fans will be banned from attending games at Blackpool FC after disgraceful scenes during Saturday's derby with Preston.

The game – which finished in a 0-0 stalemate – was marred by homophobic and racist chanting heard from the stands.

Police said it was down to a minority of fans and the day had otherwise passed peacefully.

Oyston condemns racist behaviour

After a meeting with the authorities, club bosses agreed to ban nine fans from future fixtures with a possibility of more bans to follow as the inquiry continues.

Insp David Old, of Blackpool police, said: "The club has agreed to ban nine people who will shortly receive a letter informing them of the fact.

"We are at present looking at CCTV as well as our own footage taken in the ground as the investigation concludes.

"Ideally we would look at prosecuting through the courts as those banning orders have more power.

"But we have a very good working relationship with the club and they will ban people if we request them to.

"It is in our best interests, the club's and the town's to crack down on racism."

The nine names will be added to a list of 20 fans currently under court-appointed banning orders and four supporters already banned by the club.

Eight people in total were arrested on Saturday for various alleged offences including actual bodily harm, possessing an offensive weapon, racial abuse, carrying drugs and public order offences.

All were released on police bail to a later date.

No arrests were made after a fight near British Home Stores on Corporation Street following the game.

Blackpool FC secretary Matt Williams said: "We take allegations of racist and homophobic chanting very, very seriously.

"We met with the police to discuss the safety and policing operation following a number of complaints from both sets of supporters regarding homophobic and racist chanting from both sets of fans.

"Nine people have been identified for racist and public order offences.

"These people will face bans from the club.

"We will continue to work with the police to identify and subsequently ban anyone who has been found guilty of racist or homophobic behaviour."