A REPORT on football stadium safety has found that fans attending matches in Scotland could be at “significant risk”.

The police chief who carried out an independent review called for action to establish an appropriate “governance, consultation and inspection regime” for Scottish venues.

The review of policing of the game found inconsistencies in the way safety certification is managed around the country. However, it also found the operational model for policing football is “certainly fit for purpose” with some “excellent” examples of good practice.

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The report said that progression of Rangers from the third division back to the top flight after liquidation served to “shine a spotlight” on safety practices.

A number of “serious safety issues” were highlighted, including clubs erecting unsafe scaffolding on terracing to accommodate large numbers of away fans and the deliberate selling of more tickets than the stadium capacity.

The review heard this also happened when teams with large travelling supports played at smaller grounds in the Scottish Cup.

It said the safety of spectators was put at risk and there could have been a “critical safety incident” at any of the grounds if not for the intervention of “committed professionals”.

Deputy Chief Constable Mark Roberts, the National Police Chiefs’ Council lead for football policing, who carried out the review, said: “Those type of examples clearly paint a picture where members of the public could be put at significant risk as a result of a lack of rigour in the safety framework and regime.

“A lot of people in a lot of organisations are working really hard to keep people safe, but they are working in a framework which doesn’t support them.”

Roberts recommended an urgent multi-agency review to establish an appropriate “governance, consul-tation and inspection regime” for Scottish venues.

Police Scotland commissioned the review weeks after fans were injured in a crush at the first Old Firm game of this season on September 2. It made 18 recommendations in total.

Deputy Chief Constable Will Kerr said: “Police Scotland has an enviable reputation around how it polices large events, including sporting events, but it is important to reflect on areas where we may be able to improve our procedures or learn from good practice elsewhere.

The president of the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities, Alison Evison, said councils take their community safety role extremely seriously but that the report was a “missed opportunity”.