Manchester United ban iPads and laptops from Old Trafford

Last season was a bitter pill for United, but there will be no tablets at Old Trafford this time round

Old Trafford
(Image credit: ANDREW YATES/AFP/Getty Images)

Manchester United have banned supporters from bringing iPads, tablets and laptop computers into Old Trafford this season in a bid to crack down on unlicensed filming and to ensure fans get a good view of the action.

The new rules were announced on the eve of Louis van Gaal's first match in charge at the Theatre of Dreams, a friendly against Valencia tonight.

Fans attending the game have been sent an email warning them of an "update" to club policy. "Supporters cannot bring large electronic devices (bigger than 150mmx100mm) inside the stadium. For example, iPads or other tablet devices and laptops are now prohibited," it reads.

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.


Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up

"There has been a growing trend among fans across the country to film and photograph action from matches on iPads or other tablets, which can interfere with the view for other spectators," reports the Daily Telegraph.

"There are also fears over copyright with tablet devices offering the possibility to film an entire match in high quality."

Wags were quick to point out that without the devices, capable of streaming TV, fans would not be able to see any European football at Old Trafford this season, as United failed to qualify last season.

The move is not without precedent, notes the Daily Mail. It says that in 2010 the New York Yankees baseball team also outlawed iPads, but reversed the decision two years later.

The list of banned items at Old Trafford also includes baby buggies, dark plastic bottles, camcorders and all cans.

The match against Valencia comes just four days before the start of the Premier League campaign and gives fans the chance to look at new signings Luke Shaw and Ander Herrera and welcome Van Gaal to Manchester.

Earlier this week a giant red poster emblazoned with the slogan Welcome to Vanchester was unveiled in the city centre. It apes a similar effort, in blue and featuring Carlos Tevez, that appeared in the city when the Argentine striker switched sides from United to City in 2009.

To continue reading this article...
Continue reading this article and get limited website access each month.
Get unlimited website access, exclusive newsletters plus much more.
Cancel or pause at any time.
Already a subscriber to The Week?
Not sure which email you used for your subscription? Contact us