FA announces pitch invasion rules review after Vieira and Sharp incidents

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The FA has announced it will launch a review into rules surrounding pitch invasions after both Sheffield United's Billy Sharp and Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira were attacked following such incidents in games this week.

The move comes amid a rise in violence and disorder at matches as the English football season reaches its conclusion, punctured by ugly scenes at Nottingham Forest and Everton this week amid images of wild celebration.

Now, the sport's governing body say they will look to review their own regulations on the matter, while calling on clubs to do more to combat the issue.

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What have the FA said?

"We are very concerned about the rise in anti-social behaviour from fans as we reach the end of the season," read an official FA statement published on Friday.

"Football stadiums should always be a safe and enjoyable space for everyone, and these incidents are completely unacceptable and have no place in our game.

"It is illegal to enter the pitch area in any stadium and these actions are putting players, fans and people who run the game at great risk. This simply cannot continue and we can confirm that we are investigating all of the incidences.

"Clubs play a vital role in addressing this issue and they need to prevent pitch invasions from occurring, as well as taking their own action against those that break the rules and the law. The FA will be seeking to do all that it can to work with clubs as well as addressing the issues from a disciplinary perspective.

"We are also reviewing our regulations to help stamp this behaviour out and to ensure the safety of everyone inside a stadium."

What has sparked the conversation?

The FA's comment comes on the back of both two high-profile altercations amid a spate of late-season pitch invasions and new measures from the UK government targeting drug use at matches following last year's Euro 2020 final.

Earlier this week, Sheffield United star Sharp was headbutted by a Nottingham Forest fan after the latter won a penalty shoot-out to seal their place in the Championship play-off final, amid a particularly heavy pitch invasion.

On Thursday, Crystal Palace boss Vieira was seen to lash out at an Everton fan who appeared to be taunting him following the Toffees' dramatic 3-2 comeback win to seal Premier League surival at Goodison Park, again sparking a flood of spectators arriving onto the pitch.

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