How does English football deal with an expected pitch invasion?

Like here, when Ipswich Town won promotion a few months ago. Will the team’s security people be looking over every frame of every video trying to find pitch invaders so they can be given a court summons and a ban? Will the local police riot squad be brought out to disperse? Or is the prevaling attitude one of just letting the fans have their fun, since they deserve it?

Banning all those fans is just about the worst PR idea I’ve ever heard.

Pitch invasions at the end of the season like Ipswich’s, when the team has won promotion, are very typical and although aren’t encouraged, I think the word would be ‘tolerated’ to a degree. I know there was a bit of pearl clutching on the ITFC online fans forum about whether a pitch invasion was the right thing to do, but the majority of fans seemed to think it wasn’t a problem. If you did it in the middle of a match, on the other hand… definitely some sort of ban by the club, I would’ve thought. But once the final whistle went, it was always going to happen and the stewards would’ve just let it happen. You can’t stop 10,000 fans doing that all at once.

Better to let them run onto the pitch than barricade them off and have another Hillsborough. After five minutes or so you start herding them off again.

Or worse, another Valley Parade. Wasn’t part of the problem evacuating the stands, some sort of barrier in place between the stands and the pitch?

I agree.

At other times, a pitch invader would be captured by stewards and turned over to the police.
They would miss the rest of the match and perhaps face criminal charges.