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Football commentary distracts drivers

An angry-looking driverOne in 10 drivers have had an accident or near-miss while listening to football commentary on the car radio.

Listening to football commentary is a driving distraction, according to a poll of 2,000 football fans by

More than one in every 10 fans polled admit having had an accident or near-miss while driving and listening to the likes of BBC Radio 5 Live or talkSPORT.

And 4 per cent of those polled say they drive more aggressively when their team is losing.

Some 41 per cent of fans admit punching the air when driving to celebrate a goal.

But 16 per cent admit banging the steering wheel in frustration when their team isn't doing so well.

18% don't let fans of rival clubs out at junctions

Almost one in five football fans – 18 per cent - would not let drivers displaying stickers or scarves of rival football clubs out at junctions.

Manchester City fans are most likely to discriminate against drivers in this way.

And Manchester City fans are almost twice as likely not to let fans of rival clubs out at junctions (31 per cent) than Manchester United fans (17 per cent).

West Bromwich Albion fans most stressed drivers

Half of football fans say their stress levels rise when listening to commentary on the radio while driving.

At 83 per cent, West Bromwich Albion fans are the most stressed behind the wheel, followed by Sunderland (67 per cent) and Norwich City supporters (60 per cent).

Crystal Palace and Stoke City fans are the calmest, with only 25 per cent saying they experienced increased stress levels when listening to their club play on the radio.

Football commentary causes relationship rows

Not only does listening to football commentary affect driving behaviour, it seemingly affects people's relationships as well.

Nearly 8 per cent of football fans admitted they have rowed with a partner in the car due to radio commentary.

But radio isn't the only driving distraction in our increasingly well-equipped motors.

In July we asked for your thoughts on whether sat navs are a driving distraction.

Other driving distractions

Seven out of 10 drivers had said that using in-car technology such as touchscreens, integrated phones and access to Facebook and Twitter, distracted them from driving.

This is according to research by consumer organisation Which?.

Many of you responded to this news by saying that sat-navs are there to help, not dictate, and that accidents could be avoided if only drivers would remember this.

As one reader, Ian, put it, the car radio can be a distraction, "but I find it OK provided the volume is kept at a reasonable level".

Distracted driving a road safety issue

Gemma Stanbury, head of car insurance at, says: "Distracted driving is an important issue for road safety.

"Distracted driving from radio commentary, loud music, backseat drivers and so on affects not just drivers and passengers, but also pedestrians and cyclists.

"As a motorist, there are elements within your vehicle that you can control to minimise the distractions that you are susceptible to while you drive.

"We urge people to stay aware of their surroundings when driving, and to keep the volume low enough on their radio not to block out the sounds of emergency vehicles, other vehicles or pedestrians."

Your top 10 football pundits

Our poll of 2,000 football fans also asked for your favourite commentators and pundits, and John Motson tops the list.





John Motson



Gary Lineker



Brian Moore



Chris Kamara



Alan Green



Andy Gray



Jimmy Hill



Alan Shearer



Martin Tyler



Robbie Savage


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Naphtalia Loderick

Naphtalia Loderick

Naphtalia Loderick covers all things consumer for She started out on a weekly newspaper, via a national news agency and a stint in the fun but ‘not as glamorous as it appears on screen’ world of TV at the BBC researching consumer films for The One Show.

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