Stuart Dallas casts verdict as Leeds United experiment with live crowd noise at Elland Road

STUART DALLAS says the jury is out following Leeds United's testing of live crowd effects being pumped around Elland Road for the club's final five home games.

By Lee Sobot
Saturday, 20th June 2020, 11:11 am
Updated Saturday, 20th June 2020, 11:14 am

The remainder of the Championship season will be played behind closed doors amidst the country's battle with coronavirus but Leeds have been looking at various ways to still make the most of home advantage.

Fans have already been invited to create their own 'crowdies' to be placed in the stands for United's last five games at Elland Road and 15,000 life size cut outs of supporters will oversee the clashes against Fulham, Luton Town, Stoke City, Barnsley and Charlton Athletic.

In a bid to replicate the noise of United's fans, Leeds have also experimented having live crowd effects played through 20 speakers from a theatre sound company.

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HOME ADVANTAGE: Stuart Dallas applauds Leeds United's fans at Elland Road following February's 1-0 win at home to Bristol City. Picture by Tim Goode/PA Wire.

The company - Autograph Sound - has Whites specific chants at their fingertips and big buttons for when there is a goal - green for a home strike and red for away.

The noise is aimed at not being generic but instead linked to the action on the field of play.

After training on the pitch as the live crowd effects were tested, United's Northern Ireland international gave an initial mixed review.

"I've been in a position before where I have played behind closed doors in an international game so from a match perspective it gives me a taste," said Dallas, speaking to the BBC.

"I know what it's sort of like.

"But in terms of the crowd noises it's a bit strange.

"I think it had to be turned down a bit there for the manager to speak but we'll see if the players like it."

Luke Swaffield from Autograph Sound explained: "The skills we have picked up over the years from mixing West End shows live, we are trying to adapt them.

"It's all about creating that realistic atmosphere for the players on the pitch.

"We are trying to bring back the home advantage."

QPR are set to use Autograph Sounds's effects for their Championship hosting of Barnsley today while several other Championship clubs are using their own staff to pump in noise.

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