For generations, government ministers and senior police officers have been scratching their heads to find a way to combat football hooliganism in pubs.
Now Enfield Borough Council believes it has come up with the definitive answer, and it comes in an unexpected form... lollipops.
Often associated with primary school children just after finishing a day at school, lollipops could now be offered by pubs as a solution to drunken fights and arguments.
In a recent survey sent by the council to pubs and bars across the borough, the local authority asked if selling lollipops would reduce noise levels and allow customers to leave quickly and quietly.
Mick Michael from On Broadway in Winchmore Hill, said that he had received hundreds of lollipops from the council during the 2006 World Cup.
He said: “I remember receiving hundreds of lollipops during the World Cup eight years ago and people seem to have one and then drop it on the floor.”
He added: “I think this could be sold as an idea across the world to solve football problems.
“The only game which might cause problems in Enfield is the England vs Italy match because it’s at 11pm. We at On Broadway have never had an issue regarding football games and we have shown all sorts of matches in here including the North London derby.”
An Enfield Council spokesman said: “Research has shown that providing customers with lollipops as they leave events has reduced the impact of noise created by loud talking and shouting.
“Some of the World Cup matches will finish late, and licensees have used this good practice in the past and found it to be successful. We are not aware of it being a regular occurrence at pubs.”
So could the humble lollipop provide that one ounce of solace when all seems doomed and England invariably lose on penalties?
Will it defuse arguments over a contentious red card?
Nonetheless it will provide a tasty treat at the end of long evening of alcohol consumption.