Sport

Capital Football board endorses under-12 lockout

Heather Reid said the lockout should encourage parents to reflect on their behaviour.
Heather Reid said the lockout should encourage parents to reflect on their behaviour. 

Capital Football's board has endorsed the decision to lock out parents from an under-12 soccer match this weekend, but it's still undecided whether the game will go ahead.

An alleged violent incident involving parents at a junior game between Canberra FC and Canberra Olympic in June led to the unprecedented move of banning all spectators from the return leg at Deakin Stadium on Saturday.

Canberra FC requested Capital Football reconsider its decision and allow the parents not involved to watch their children play, but the involvement of unidentified parties forced the decision to stand.

One compromise proposed was for parents to be allowed to watch from inside the Deakin clubhouse.

On Wednesday, Canberra FC secretary Martin Radic said the club was still waiting to hear from Olympic as to whether the game would go ahead.

"We put a proposal as a gesture of goodwill, but Capital Football has decided to stick with the original sanction, which is to ban the parents from attending the match," he said.

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"Canberra FC respect that decision and we will abide by it. In regards to the game going ahead, we are awaiting a decision from Canberra Olympic.

"If they decide not to play, we'll have to respect that as well and move forward."

Olympic did not return The Canberra Times' calls.

Capital Football chief executive Heather Reid hoped the parents would drop their children off and pick them up when the game was over.

"There was concern that there were definitely other parents involved that weren't identified," she said.

"There was very little indication, particularly from Canberra FC, who had put the olive branch [out] to try and allow the parents in, there was no real acknowledgement that the parents needed to take responsibility for their actions and so, in the absence of that, the game would remain as one the parents weren't allowed to watch.

"While that might not be very kind to people not involved in the incident, we're continuing to promote the message that this would not be tolerated and everyone has to take responsibility."

The incident was sparked following a red card for a Canberra FC player, who allegedly got into a fight with an Olympic player as he left the field.

This prompted the Olympic player's father to run onto the field and allegedly grab the FC boy by the throat, who's father then ran on to defend his son.

Witnesses reported that after allegedly shoulder-charging the Olympic player's father, the FC parent was hit from behind by an unidentified spectator.

The FC player was suspended for seven games, his father banned from watching for six weeks and the Olympic parent for 12. The original game was also deemed a non-result.