City have announced that the proposed friendly against Feyenoord on July 26th has been cancelled “in consultation with the Police on safety grounds”.
Of course, this is code for Humberside Police demanding a wholly unrealistic sum of money in order to police the fixture, one that would lead to the club risking a loss on the fixture. Attempts to lower the figure quoted were unsuccessful, leading to the cancellation of the fixture.
It’s pretty galling stuff. Barnsley are also playing Feyenoord this month, and South Yorkshire Police are charging just a fraction of the sum Humberside Police wished to extract from the Tigers – evidence of just how our local force views its football club as something to extort money from.
Everyone loses from this. It leaves City with a hole in their pre-season plans, deprives us of a reasonably attractive fixture, seriously inconveniences Feyenoord fans who’ve already paid for transport to England and booked hotels in East Yorkshire – and of coure, local business in Hull will no longer have the chance to benefit from the custom brought by thousands of Feyenoord fans visiting our city, hardly good news in these tough times. And lastly, it reduces even further the standing of Humberside Police in the eyes of a fanbase who regards their local police as nothing but unremittingly hostile to us.
2215 UPDATE: It seems we overestimated South Yorkshire Police, for Barnsley have now cancelled their friendly against Feyenoord, hysterically slandering their fans as posing a “high likelihood of large-scale disorder and grave consequences”.