We live near Premier League ground & it's awful… rowdy fans use our gardens as toilets but it’s not the biggest problem | The Sun

IT'S been a fixture in Chelsea for almost 200 years, but the future of Stamford Bridge has been thrown into doubt.

Club co-owner Todd Boehly wants to ditch the old arena and move the team to a new state-of-the-art ground – possibly in a different location.

The current venue can hold around 40,000 fans – far less capacity than other top Premier League clubs, but still enough to cause chaos on game days in the affluent south west London neighbourhood.

And the thought of double the amount of supporters traipsing along the streets of Fulham fills residents with dread.

Following the Blues' Tuesday night victory against Borussia Dortmund in the UEFA Champions League, The Sun headed down the next morning to chat to locals about the realities of living next to the famous ground.

Liz Miller, 66, has been a resident there for decades and revealed her surprising bugbear on match days.


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"When Chelsea are playing at home you can't buy a bottle of wine in any of the shops around here," she tells us.

"It's really irritating, especially if you don't follow football."

She adds: "The fans are a lot better behaved than they used to be."

Liz, who walks her dog Sherlock every day near the ground, says she loves the crowds the stadium draws – but isn't thrilled when the roads end up gridlocked.

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Resident Liz Miller says it drives her nuts on match days because she can't buy a bottle of wine anywhereCredit: Olivia West
A large canister of hippy crack had been dumped on a wall near the stadiumCredit: Olivia West

"They're hot on clearing the rubbish from fans, but it's not the same when it comes to the poo from police horses," she adds.

"That's always left all over the place. It's a bit grim."

Pee patrol

By 7am the majority of the rubbish dropped on the route to the London Underground station by drunken fans had been cleared up – but some remained scattered down side roads.

We saw half-empty beer cans, bottles and food wrappers, and even a large canister of laughing gas, dubbed Hippy Crack, dumped on a resident's garden wall.

While residents we spoke to praised the authorities for keeping litter dumped by fans to a minimum, some highlighted other problems that need attention.

Council worker Tajudeen Afolabi says many residents are upset by the behaviour of football hooligans.

"Residents often get in touch with us to report bad behaviour after a match has been played at the stadium," he says.

"After the latest one, one resident got in touch to say someone had defecated in their garden.

"Almost all want solutions to public urination as it is really dirty and gets on people's nerves."

One man, who asked not to be named, tells us: "It's great that they clear up the rubbish, but the more important thing to deal with is people weeing all over the place.

"Sometimes if you've got to go, you just have to go, but why aren't there more toilets for fans to use outside the stadium?"

Sometimes if you've got to go, you just have to go, but why aren't there more toilets for fans to use outside the stadium?

Another points out: "I don't see why we can't have those standing urinals put in. That would solve a big part of the problem with people weeing anywhere they can find."

Residents showed us a popular corner next to Waterford Road, near Fulham Broadway station, where fans regularly stop to urinate before the long journey home.

Chelsea fan Wayne says: "They used to go there all the time but I think residents complained.

"Now they have a police officer there on match days to stop it from happening.

"It's just one of those things. If there were proper places to go, people would use them.

"Other than that, I love living here and hearing the crowd go wild at matches. It's a big part of the atmosphere of the area."

Gridlocked traffic

Almost all the residents we spoke to highlighted the impact match days have on traffic in the area, with which often bring roads to a standstill.

Someone who knows only too well how bad it can get is taxi driver Tesfayi, 51.

"I love the club, but on match days it is hard to get back home after my shift," he says.

"The traffic around the stadium is problematic… but it's only ever on match days so I don't mind it too much.

"I'm a big Chelsea fan so I like living near the stadium. It's worth it."

Alex, a mining engineer, admits the traffic is "annoying", but he likes the "buzz" the stadium brings to the area.

He adds: "It's only for one evening so I don't mind it really. Plus we get more regular Tubes which is great."

In an attempt to make things easier for fans travelling to and from Stamford Bridge, TFL put on extra services.

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But one dad we spoke to says he avoids the packed Tubes like the plague.

The parent, who asked not to be named, tells us: "Extra Tubes are great, but when I have to take my 12-year-old on the Underground she often ends up in tears thanks to rowdy football fans hitting everything. It's not great."

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