Everton’s board of directors have been instructed to stay away from Goodison Park when the Toffees host Southampton in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon because of a “real and credible threat to their safety and security.” Everton are struggling for form and have dropped into the Premier League relegation zone after winning just three games all season.
On Saturday, Everton confirmed in a statement on their website that their chairman Bill Kenwright, chief executive Denise Barrett-Baxendale, chief finance & strategy officer Grant Ingles and non-executive director Graeme Sharp have all reluctantly accepted the outcome of the safety assessment carried out by security advisors.
The board members were told not to attend the match after the club received “malicious and unacceptably threatening correspondence” amid “increasing incidents of anti-social behaviour – including targeted physical aggression – at recent home matches.”
A security & safety advisor said: “Following a thorough risk assessment, and in response to tangible threats received by the club and intelligence we have gathered, the club’s board members have been told they must not attend today’s fixture.”
A club spokesperson then added: “This is an unprecedented decision for Everton Football Club – never before has our entire board of directors been ordered not to attend a match on safety grounds. It is a profoundly sad day for Everton and Evertonians.”
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