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Page last updated at 07:33 GMT, Tuesday, 10 April 2012 08:33 UK

Taxpayer cost of policing football is 'substantial'


England's most senior football policing officer has said he believes clubs should be paying millions more towards the cost of staging games.

Andy Holt, the lead on football for the Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo), told the Today programme's James Naughtie that the taxpayer picks up a "substantial proportion" of the cost of policing football matches.

He was speaking after Acpo-commissioned research found a significant rise in crime and disorder away from stadiums on match days.

Dr Geoff Pearson, expert in football crowd disorder at the University of Liverpool, said the findings were not surprising given the sheer number of people that travel to football matches.

"The fans that are travelling to games are putting money into the local economy," he pointed out, but welcomed looking at policing, not just at football matches but also at other sporting and music events.

Andy Holt said that the wider public will look at some of the costs around football and "scratch their heads in wonder" given the high wages of football players and managers.

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