Hillsborough Tribute Sees English Games Kick off 7 Minutes Late from April 11-14

Tim DanielsFeatured ColumnistMarch 21, 2014


All English football matches scheduled from April 11-14 will start seven minutes later than scheduled in remembrance of the Hillsborough disaster.

Eurosport passed along word of the decision to pay respect to all of those who were impacted by the tragedy in April 1989:

A total of 96 people lost their lives as a result of the crush during an FA Cup semi-final featuring Liverpool and Nottingham Forest. Hundreds more were injured in what became one of the most devastating disasters in the sport's long history.

The BBC provided details on the Hillsborough papers released two years ago, which stated as many as 41 people could have been saved if treatment was provided quicker. Prime Minister David Cameron apologized for what he deemed a "double injustice:"

David Cameron has said he is profoundly sorry for the "double injustice" of the Hillsborough football disaster.

Speaking after an independent report into previously unseen documents about the tragedy, the prime minister said police had failed to do enough and had also tried to blame Liverpool fans.

After the incident, the match between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest was called off just six minutes after kick-off. Using that period of time followed by a minute of silence for the victims is how the decision was reached to start all fixtures seven minutes late.

The Premier League released a statement about the plans:

The match at which the disaster took place, the FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest on 15 April 1989, was ended six minutes after kick-off, at 3.06pm.

In the Premier League, Football League, and Football Conference, matches due to kick off at 3pm on Saturday 12 April will now do so at 3.07pm, with the minute before kick-off (3.06pm-3.07pm) having a period of silence observed at all stadiums.

Although it was a dark moment for the sporting community, it's important to remember and honor the victims. Starting the matches late is a small act, but it ensures football fans around England are given a chance to reflect.

Both FA Cup semi-finals are scheduled for that weekend. Wigan Athletic and Arsenal will face off on April 12 followed by Hull City taking on Sheffield United the next day. Each match is slated to take place at Wembley Stadium in London.

Those matches should highlight a great weekend of football. But first it's important to take a look back as a mark of respect for the Hillsborough disaster.