The Fans’ Embassy concept can be traced back to services provided for supporters of the England and Germany teams at the 1990 World Cup in Italy, and has evolved through subsequent tournaments.
The implementation of preventive and social measures as well as offering structural support for travelling supporters at international tournaments are the main concepts of the Fans’ Embassy. These have proven to be valuable and significant additions to the conventional security measures during all major football events in the past 25 years.
Fans’ Embassy is the name that has been given to an advice, information and support service for football supporters travelling to an away game or an international tournament in a foreign country. The provision of a Fans’ Embassy service forms a very constructive and positive part of the hospitality programme at a tournament.
The essential features of a Fans’ Embassy service are the provision of accurate, reliable, up-to-date, independent and objective information on any matters of interest to football fans.
Fans’ Embassies also provide information that is tailored to the specific fields of interest of football supporters, such as about (inter)national fan culture and about alternative activities in the host cities. Fans’ Embassies provide help and assistance in case of emergency (physical violence, theft, etc.) and can be addressed as mediators in conflict situations.
Though absolutely not to be considered a tool of the policing authorities at a tournament, experience has shown that the presence of a Fans’ Embassy service, with its provision of accurate information and promotion of goodwill between supporter groups, can help to reduce significantly feelings of insecurity and exclusion among supporters, thereby contributing to a reduction of the tensions that can engender violence.
A Fans’ Embassy should be an independent centre for fans, which means that the work of the Fans’ Embassy should NOT be connected to commercial goals, companies or (football) organisations, nor should the Fans’ Embassy be linked to any type of political ideology or organisations.
Fans’ Embassy principles:
- By fans for fans
- Provision of independent and reliable information
- Confidential handling of personal data
- Fans’ Embassies are “neutral”, welcoming all fans
- Not linked to commercial organisations
- No tourist information
To find out more about the activities of the FSE Fans Embassies network members, visit the website of the FSE Fans Embassy Division!