A MAN said the consequences could have been “life-changing” after being injured by a flare at an AFC Bournemouth match and called for improved security in the future.

Chris Millar, 27, was told he was lucky not to lose his eyesight after a flare lit behind him at Cherries’ final game of the season against Millwall singed his eyebrow.

Mr Millar said “something needs to change” to improve security as flares have become increasingly popular in English football.

READ MORE: Cherries ramping up CCTV system at Vitality Stadium

Bournemouth Echo:

He said: “It was a good atmosphere, we’re back in the Premier League, and when the players were coming out the person behind me lit a flare.

“I’ve got asthma and saw smoke, so I turned around and this flare started spitting a lot of ash and hit my eye.

“Luckily my eyesight was fine, but I did have an injury to my eye, and I was told I was extremely lucky to have my eyesight.”

Mr Millar said the flare broke his glasses and destroyed his Bournemouth top.

“I want to get something out there because if it happens again the next person might not be so lucky,” he continued.

“I went to Blackburn away and the whole away end was filled with smoke. If they can bring flares in, what’s stopping them bringing in all sorts?

“It does help the atmosphere sometimes but if they’re going to bring it in put it on the floor or don’t bring it in at all.

“The impact it could have is massive, it could be life-changing. I am an engineer, if I had lost my eyesight, I would have lost my job and my driving licence, my whole world would have changed.

“People don’t realise the impact they have, I don’t want it to happen to anyone else.”

It comes as Cherries confirmed a “number of safety measures” will be implemented in the new season.

An AFC Bournemouth spokesperson told the Daily Echo: "Many people will have seen a deterioration in supporter behaviour across the country and inevitably footballing bodies and clubs are looking to respond to this.

"There will be a number of safety measures implemented to tackle these issues during the new season and beyond.

"We want all supporters to have a safe and enjoyable experience at Vitality Stadium and when they travel away to watch their team and we will update supporters on these measures as and when they are implemented."

A Dorset Police spokesperson said: “We received a report on Monday, May 9, that a man aged in his 20s had sustained an eye injury and burns that were reported to have been caused by a flare when he attended a match at the Vitality Stadium on Saturday, May 7.

“Officers have carried out a number of enquiries into this incident. No arrests have been made.”