Domestic violence set to surge after Euros 2020 final due to alcohol consumption, whether England win or lose

·3 min read
domestic violence
  • A new study has found that domestic violence increases after football matches by 5% every two hours.

  • This is caused by excessive alcohol consumption during matches.

  • Domestic violence specialists call for a change to the soccer drinking culture to protect women and children.

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

England soccer fans are hoping for the national team's first major soccer triumph in more than 50 years at the England and Italy Euro 2020 final in London this evening. Meanwhile, victims of domestic violence fear the worst.

Data shows that regardless of the outcome, domestic violence will increase post-match. Looking back to the 2010 World Cup, domestic violence leaped 27.7% when England won a match. A 33.9% increase was recorded when they lost.

A study published on July 4 from the Centre for Economic Performance (CEP) found that after the final whistle, domestic abuse incidents grow by 5% every two hours, peaking at about 8.5% more incidents than average ten hours after the game started.

Data from the Football, alcohol and domestic abuse study
Data from the Football, alcohol and domestic abuse study, showing the spike in domestic violence after football games Football, alcohol and domestic abuse (2021), by Ria Ivandić, Tom Kirchmaier, and Neus Torres-Blas

Tom Kirchmaier, the co-author of the study and director of the policing and crime research group at CEP, said that this increase in post-game intimate partner crime is "entirely driven" by men who have drunk alcohol.

"I also knew that if the guys in the pub, if they lost a match, I knew their wives wouldn't be out at the weekend, because they'd have a black eye...or busted ribs or something like that, I just knew," one woman is quoted as saying in the research paper.

Ria Ivandic, lecturer in political economy at the University of Oxford and a research economist at CEP, said: "These results suggest that sporting events do not trigger domestic abuse by themselves, but rather through the excessive alcohol consumption that usually follows these events."

The British Beer and Pub Association has suggested that nearly 13m pints will be sold on Sunday, with 7.1m pints consumed during the match.

The study has sparked a conversation around the drinking culture of soccer games in England.

Data from the Football, alcohol and domestic abuse study showing impact of alcohol consumption on domestic abuse
Data from the Football, alcohol and domestic abuse study (2021) showing impact of alcohol consumption on domestic abuse Football, alcohol and domestic abuse (2021), by Ria Ivandić, Tom Kirchmaier, and Neus Torres-Blas

Speaking to Insider, Hera Hussain - founder of Chayn, a social enterprise working to support women impacted by gender-based violence - said: "There is a role for football stars to play about this. Ten years ago, racial slurs against footballers were just accepted. And now, football clubs are doing something about it. They're telling you the behavior they expect to protect their players from such abuse. We need a similar strategy when it comes to domestic abuse. Women and children deserve that. The recklessness, the brawls, the drinking, all should stop."

Hussain believes family and friends also need to be more proactive. "Checking on this behavior also falls on the friends and family of abusers because they most probably know that there's an issue. If you're with them while they're drinking, while they're watching the match, why not check in with them on that behavior. Stop them from reaching that dangerous level," she said.

For information on what to do if you or someone you know is experiencing domestic abuse, go to the National Centre for Domestic Violence's website for UK-based resources or Chayn HQ for support across the world.

Read the original article on Insider