Guarda (Portugal), April 27: Portugual’s top-tier football league, with the backing of 18 clubs, is pushing for a reform — to allow sale and consumption of beer in stadium. It, they feel, will improve security at the venue.
The initiative, in contrast to what it might appear, would allow enhanced security as fans would be able to drink low-alcohol beer in stadium and will not need to consume too much alcohol outside pitches before the kick off, according to the Portuguese league.
To that end, it’s necessary to make changes to Law 39, approved in 2009, that regulates the action against violence, racism, xenophobia and intolerance in sports events.
The Portuguese League Director of Legal Affairs Paulo Mariz Rozeira told Efe news selling beer at the stadium should not be a problem and added it would actually improve security.
They cite Germany as an example, where rules allow for sale of beer at stadiums.
In some cases, like Schalke’s Veltins Arena, the stadium is equipped with five-km pipe that enables fans to drink beer through hand-pump faucets during matches.
Drinking alcohol in sports venues is forbidden in Portugal as well as Spain since the 1980s. The cultural mix of beer, football and interests of sponsors could push the situation in another direction.
As a matter of fact, the organising committee of the 2018 FIFA World Cup held in Russia allowed beer to be sold at stadium, and the UEFA permitted it during the European games as long as it was compatible with laws of the host countries.