My Letter to Paris Saint Germain regarding smoking
So, I recently went on a mini trip to Paris where I took in two fixture of PSG including the second leg of the Champions League tie vs Valencia. Now I know people will say I was always going to write a letter to the club about ‘something’ but I do believe this letter is warranted. The in-game experience was somewhat soiled by the majority of fans around me appearing to be enjoying and passing around joints ! That’s my point, maybe I’m an old fuddy duddy now, but so be it. Would you like your kids in that sort of atmosphere? i wouldn’t.
Lets talk about the trip in general. 4 night in Paris, we took in the Valencia game and a league game vs Nancy. Checked out the usual tourist things (Eiffel tower & Champs Elysees, ate pancakes and macarons) drank in an Irish pub, almost got mugged by a couple of eastern euro birds at Gare du Nord as well as checking out Roland Garros and Stade de France. Incidently, but highly irrelevant this was the third time I’ve see Zlatan Ibrahimovic play having previously seen him play and score at both the Nou Camp for Barca and at the San Siro for AC Milan.
PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN FOOTBALL CLUB
24 rue du Commandant Guilbaud
75781 Paris Cedex 16
28 March 2013
I recently visited the Parc des princes from England for two fixtures in March. These were the Champions League tie vs Valencia and the Ligue Un match vs Nancy. Whilst both games were particularly uneventful I write this letter to highlight something to you, which I believe is unacceptable in the modern day.
My issue is regards to smoking within the stadium. In the UK most public places are now non-smoking. For the vast majority of people this is such a positive stance. Before I go on I will say that I do not know what the club’s view on the subject is or whether smoking is prohibited. This is primarily because my ability to speak and understand spoken and written French is very bad. However, what I can confirm is that during my trip smoking within the stadium was excessive.
Some people will no doubt have the viewpoint that the stadium is open air and therefore smoking is acceptable. I am not naïve to discard this valid point especially considering the culture of smoking in many European countries such as France. Now, the point of my letter is not necessarily smoking, but concerns the central poster in the picture I took below during my visit.
As I previously said, I do not speak French. I can use an online translator, however they are largely inaccurate. Therefore the true meaning of this poster is unclear to me. I can however use common sense and by doing so I would assume that the poster refers to the use of drugs using graphical illustration to explain that they are prohibited from this stadium. If that is indeed the aim, unfortunately I am the bearer of bad news. During my visit I noticed many spectators smoking drugs. It is my opinion that there should be a zero tolerance to drugs within what I would describe as a family environment. I personally left the stadium with a significant headache due to the smoke. In addition I noticed a couple that sat near to us who had been struggling with the smoke that did not return to their seat after the half time interval.
Whatever the culture or the rules, there really is no place for this in a football stadium in the modern game. Particularly as the perpetrators are usually young guys who you are not really in a position to reprimand as a spectator. I have written this letter to you to highlight the issue, as this is not a place I would recommend on this basis.
I trust that you will consider the contents of this letter and make changes or increase the level of effort in tackling this situation.