Football fan handed ban and hefty fines for ‘tragedy chanting’ during Man United v Liverpool match

"We are continuing to take a proactive action against those engaged in this type of behaviour."

Emily Sergeant Emily Sergeant - 23rd April 2024

A football fan has been handed a football banning order and some hefty fines for ‘tragedy chanting’ at Old Trafford last month.

Michael Avery, from Manchester, was in attendance at Manchester United‘s home ground last month as the Red Devils took on fierce local rivals Liverpool in the FA Cup quarter final on Sunday 17 March, according to Greater Manchester Police (GMP).

But due to his actions at the hotly-anticipated match, the 49-year-old has now been “successfully convicted”.

His convictions come after GMP’s Specialist Operational football investigation team carried out enquiries following obtaining video footage of a man in the home section of the Old Trafford crowd making gestures – which was also widely-shared on social media.

Avery was subsequently charged with Section 4a of the Public Order Act 1986, and this was in addition to arrests and charges made to other supporters relating to pyrotechnics.


Avery pleaded guilty to the offence yesterday (Monday 22 April) at Salford Magistrates Court, and for this, received a three-year Football Banning Order (FBO) alongside costs of £85, a victim surcharge of £320, and a fine of £800, which was reduced due to an early guilty plea.

GMP says it’s keen to continue taking “proactive action” against football supporters who take part in behaviour of this type of behaviour.

A football fan has been banned and fined for ‘tragedy chanting’ during a Man United v Liverpool match / Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Reflecting on the case, following Avery being convicted earlier this week, Chief Inspector Jamie Collins, from GMP’s Specialist Operations Branch, commented: “Following the understandable concern raised online following the video being shared of Avery’s actions, we undertook an investigation into this to ensure justice was brought.

“We are continuing to take a proactive action against those engaged in this type of behaviour that is intent on causing distress to victims and supporters impacted by terrible football tragedies of the past.

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“Any kind of gesture or comments in relation to tragedy chanting will not be tolerated and is totally unacceptable.”

Featured Image – GMP