Safe standing allowed at Wembley for EFL Cup final

    The safe standing areas at Wembley Stadium are located behind each goal

    Some supporters will be permitted to stand during the EFL Cup final between Manchester United and Newcastle United.

    The match, on 26 February, will be the first major domestic English men’s final in almost 35 years in which standing will be allowed.

    Both clubs will be allocated 867 seats within new safe standing areas located behind each goal at Wembley Stadium.

    Premier League and EFL clubs have been allowed to introduce standing areas since the start of the 2022-23 season.

    It came after five clubs – Chelsea, Manchester City, Manchester United, Tottenham Hotspur and Cardiff City – took part in a government-commissioned ‘early adopters’ pilot study during the second half of the 2021-22 campaign.

    In safe standing areas, fans stand behind a barrier or a rail which helps prevent them from falling forward.

    Designated standing areas had not been seen at Premier League grounds since the adoption of all-seater stadiums in the early 1990s – a recommendation of the Taylor Report following the Hillsborough disaster in 1989 when 97 Liverpool fans died following a crush at an FA Cup semi-final.

    Spectators at many grounds have continued to stand in seated areas, most commonly behind the goals, despite regular warnings from local authorities and police that it is dangerous.

    Standing areas in stadiums are commonplace in Germany’s Bundesliga and there are similar examples across the rest of Europe, the United States and Australia.

    The EFL Cup final will be Manchester United’s first domestic final appearance since 2018 and puts them a win away from ending their six-year wait for a trophy.

    For Newcastle, it will mark their first cup final since 1999 and a chance to win their first trophy since Ujpest Dozsa were beaten in the 1969 Inter Cities’ Fairs Cup Final.

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