Promoting infections? Leeds United fans celebrate elevation to the Premier League by hugging and dancing at non-socially distant street party in the city
- Thousands of fans were out celebrating in Millennium Square, Leeds, today
- One celebrating fan broke his leg after falling from a lamppost at the celebration
- Crowds were packed together with little room for social distancing on Sunday
- Leeds United fans traveled to city centre after 3-1 win over Derby County
Thousands of Leeds United fans packed into the city centre this afternoon, leaving little room for social distancing as they celebrated promotion to the Premier League after a 16 year absence.
West Yorkshire Police was forced to arrest some fans as supporters packed close together, chanting songs and letting off flares in Millennium Square, following a 3-1 win over Derby County.
The crowd gathered just a short walk from Leeds General Infirmary, where NHS staff have been battling the coronavirus pandemic for months.
Thousands of Leeds United fans flouted social distancing rules as they celebrated promotion to the Premier League today
One celebrating fan fell from a lamp post and broke his leg, and had to be taken to the hospital.
Fans descended on the city centre after heading to Elland Road, the club’s home ground, yesterday to celebrate promotion.
Footage from the city shows supporters ignoring one-metre distancing rules as they drink from cans and lift one another up, letting off blue and yellow flares.
Leeds-born IBF featherweight boxing champion Josh Warrington was also spotted among the crowd of fans.
Fans were seen hugging and picking one another up as they let off flares in Millennium Square
One fan was rushed to hospital with a suspected broken leg after falling from a lamppost during today’s celebrations in Leeds
Somebody commented on Twitter: ‘I live in Leeds and these images of fans celebrating in Millennium Square make me worried that we will be following Leicester for lockdown in a couple of weeks.’
MailOnline has approached West Yorkshire Police for a comment.
A huge clean up operation was underway on Saturday morning after promotion was secured the previous night.
Several cars were damaged and litter was strewn across the street following celebrations.
Leeds owner Andrea Radrizzani had asked fans to be mindful of Covid-19 while celebrating.
He said: ‘The last four months have been incredibly difficult for everyone around the world, but I believe the way our communities have pulled together has been amazing – especially here in Yorkshire where huge progress has been made due to our values and collective spirit.
‘Thanks to the tremendous work of healthcare teams and key workers, and the sacrifices we have all made, the situation has improved.’
‘However, my message to you all is that the fight against Covid-19 is not yet over and we must continue to be sensible. I know many of you are desperate to show our boys support during this important week – but the health and well-being of our loved ones in our community must be our top priority.
Thousands of Leeds fans were packed together in Millennium Square outside the city’s museum
Fans were seen clambering on to the Leeds City Museum building as they drank and ignored social distancing rules
‘I have always felt that football means little without the presence of fans, and now I know that for sure. However, it is vitally important we stay safe and keep those around us safe too by staying at home.’
Scenes today were reminiscent of crowds in Liverpool last month after the Reds won their first Premier League title.
Merseyside Police sealed off roads near Anfield stadium as they tried to disperse thousands of Liverpool fans who gathered outside the ground.
Thousands of fans flocked to Anfield to let off flares, chant and celebrate the title win, while ignoring social distancing measures.
Some 5,000 fans managed to surround the stadium before police sealed off roads leading to it, though they made no move to break up the party.
A handful of police vans and uniformed officers waited near the ground – though the celebrations were peaceful despite a lack of social distancing. A police helicopter was also seen circling the ground.