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Saturday, 24 August, 2002, 14:04 GMT 15:04 UK
Four Cardiff City fans held
Cardiff City's reputation for football trouble looks set to continue after four fans suspected of being banned by the courts from attending games were arrested at the team's away match against Swindon Town.

The four were held by Wiltshire Police before the game had begun.

Hooliganism figures from Home Office
Arrests at Cardiff games: 129
Cardiff fans' banning orders: 125
Arrests at Swansea games: 7
Arrests at Wrexham games: 11

Officers said they were expecting around 4,000 Bluebirds supporters for the clash at Swindon's County Ground - many without tickets - and were prepared for any problems.

Home Office figures show Cardiff City has the highest number of banning orders imposed by the courts among all the clubs in the football league.

A total of 125 Bluebirds fans were banned from going to matches at home and abroad last season as football's authorities sought to tackle an upsurge in trouble in and around grounds.

The statistics show Cardiff City is a contender for the top place in the sport's hooliganism league.

The number of arrests at Cardiff games more than doubled from 40 in league games to 100, and 129 in all competitions, while overall arrests for football-related arrests during the 2001-02 season fell by six per cent.

Cardiff fans
A pitch invasion followed the Leeds game

In Division Two, only Stoke had a higher number of arrests, 143, and it was second for banning orders, with 107.

Followers of Cardiff and Stoke have history of clashes.

Of the 129 arrests of Bluebirds' supporters, 17 were for violent disorder, 46 were for public disorder, 13 were for throwing of missiles, ten people were held for running onto the pitch, 36 were alcohol offences and ten were for miscellaneous offences.

In May, Cardiff City chairman Sam Hammam called for an emergency summit meeting with the police, council leaders, and the Football Association of Wales, in a bid to beat hooliganism at the club.

Crowd trouble

His call came after a BBC documentary on the club's hooligan problem.

In the same month, the club was fined 20,000 after it was found guilty of misconduct following crowd trouble at the team's FA Cup tie with Leeds United in January.

South Wales Police Chief Superintendent Jeff Cooksley, said: "We are increasing the number of season ticket holders, we've made changes within the ground which will help us police the ground, and these will combine to let us have a much happier, safer, ground."

See also:

17 May 02 | Hooligans
10 May 02 | Hooligans
11 Jan 02 | Newsmakers
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