There have been plenty of field invasions in sports, but it’s rarer to see spectators try to interfere with a broadcast team. Those attempts do sometimes happen, as with CBS’ coverage of the CONCACAF Nations League final last month, but they’re often not successful. However, the remarkable amount of pre-match hooliganism ahead of Sunday’s Euro 2020 final at London’s Wembley Stadium led to English broadcaster Sky Sports first relocating and then abandoning their on-site set, as per John Cross of The Daily Mirror:
Incredibly, there have been estimates of crowds up to 250,000 outside Wembley as drunken yobs avoided police advice to stay away from the Euros final.
Sky Sports were also forced to abandon their live studio near Wembley Way because idiots were throwing bottles at the set.
A Sky spokesman said: “On advice of Sky security, Wembley Park and UEFA, we moved our broadcast point to a different location in the compound. Then during match, after a further review by Wembley officials we decided to close the facility and return to all output from Osterley HQ.”
Cross’ piece goes well beyond that, touching on the amounts of ticketless spectators who somehow managed to get in the stadium and even forced many family members of the teams out of their seats. But the broadcast dimension is certainly interesting, and it illustrates how dangerous this was for even those trying to cover Sunday’s final. And, given the wider discussion here about English hooliganism past and present, it’s going to be interesting to see how their planned bid to host the 2030 World Cup goes.