Watford FC outraged two student fans when it suspended their season tickets without warning.

The club sent a letter saying it had "not yet seen proof" of their student status - despite never asking for it.

It added their tickets had been deactivated until they could send the necessary paperwork - a letter of confirmation of confirmation by email, but not a student card.

A friend of the pair, Ben Gubbins, said: “This was the club’s first contact. No warning, no request, just a letter saying they were suspended until they could provide proof of student status.”

Mr Gubbins, 26, stressed sending proof would be impossible for one of the ticket holders, whose university enrolment did not take place until a week after the letter was sent.

The students were both living away from home, and it was only because their mother opened the letter that they knew of the suspension.

Mr Gubbins said: “If it weren’t for that, they would have shown up to the game without any indication of an issue whatsoever and would have been turned away.”

The club’s head of communications, Richard Walker, said: “We understand the frustrations felt by some supporters in relation to our recent letter to student season ticket holders.

“Our judgment as to when most university courses would have started by appears to be about right given the large number of letters from places of education that were previously outstanding and have now been received. We are grateful for this co-operation.

“Across the 500 or so student season ticket holders to have been sent letters, understandably there have been some expressions of disappointment at the deadline provided.

“We’re happy to extend that deadline for any supporter yet to have been able to provide relevant proof – and we encourage people to phone the ticket office or pop in and talk to staff at any time up.”

Watford is one of only a few Premier League clubs to offer a special concession rate to full-time students, with the cheapest student season ticket coming in at £150.