Plastic pitches: Football League clubs vote against reintroduction

QPR Loftus Road
The first ever Football League game on an artificial surface, in September 1981, when QPR lost 2-1 to Luton at Loftus Road

Football League clubs have voted not to reintroduce artificial pitches.

A vote on the issue in November 2014 ended in a tie but clubs were balloted again last week and decided against the use of plastic playing surfaces.

A Football League spokesman said the "majority" of clubs "prefer to play their matches on grass pitches".

The Professional Footballers' Association (PFA) also welcomed the decision, which it said was in line with players' wishes.

Simon Barker, assistant chief executive of the PFA, said: "From the players' point of view they just want the best surface available to them.

"Some of the reasons why clubs wanted [plastic pitches] wasn't about the quality, it was about the extra income they could bring into the club by leasing it out.

"Most of the people we were speaking to, the figures being quoted [for extra income] were totally inflated. That was the issue regarding ourselves [as well as] the health and safety issues."

Artificial surfaces were banned in professional football in 1995 over problems with ball roll and injuries.

However, they can be used in the FA Cup and at Conference level.

3G or not 3G?
3G pitches consist of artificial blades supported by sand and rubber crumbThey can be laid on various shock absorbing bases to suit different sports
3G pitches cost around £500,000 to installThey can be used in all weather

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