Cheltenham-based Spurs fan reacts to Lazio assault allegations
Echo and Citizen sports writer James Young is, for his many sins, a Tottenham Hotspur fan.
He considered making the trip to watch his team play Lazio in the Europa League - here's why he didn't.
EVERY year, after the draw is made for the European fixtures - and assuming Spurs have qualified - I have a chat with a mate about whether we fancy going to watch an away game in Europe.
Gents, come in to Earl's & Co and enjoy a haircut and finish, glass of whisky and a shoeshine for £18.50
Terms: Later and earlier appointments available upon request
Contact: 01242 504887
Valid until: Tuesday, December 31 2013
This year was no different and a casual check was made into where and how we could get to games.
However, the trip to Rome and to watch Lazio was immediately discounted.
I have been to Italy to watch football and it's a far more intimidating experience than watching the game in this country.
You have to be on your guard as each and every team has an extremely unsavoury group of so called 'Ultra' supporters attached to it.
But never have I feared for my life, been involved in, or witnessed the type of incident that tragically seems to have occured on the streets of Rome last night.
It appears that some Spurs fans were sat in a Roman bar and were attacked by a group of Lazio fans, some yielding iron bars.
There was a hint of nastiness around the return fixture at White Hart Lane earlier this season, where the Lazio 'fans' decided to barrack Spurs' black players with incessant monkey chants.
But this latest incident appears to have other much darker connotations linked to it. Ones that we all hoped had gone from football and modern society forever.
Tottenham fans have always played up to the club's links to London's Jewish community, no doubt with many of their fans not actually realising that their '*** Army' chants mean.
Meanwhile, Lazio's group of 'Ultras' – the fans that are reported to have been involved in this attack that left one man badly injured – have, in the past been linked to extreme right wing political thinking.
You can only hope for the sake of football and society, that this wasn't a premeditated and callous attack on the grounds of the Spurs fans' Jewish links.
It's a just game of football after all.