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02nd May 2018

Liverpool issue safety instructions to fans travelling to Rome after fans chased with knives and bottles

Michael Lanigan

Liverpool issue statement from Sean Cox's family

Reports of the clubs’ fans being set upon by Roma fans have surfaced already.

Liverpool FC has issued advice to fans ahead of the second leg of their Champions League semi-final against AS Roma in Rome, where some fans have allegedly been chased with knives and bottles despite not wearing the Liverpool club colours.

According to the Liverpool Echo, two fans were chased by Italians carrying iron bars upon leaving the Drunken Ship pub at Piazza Campo de’ Fiori during the early hours of Wednesday morning.

BBC Radio 5 Live has also reported a separate incident involving four Liverpool supporters who were chased with knives and bottles.

According to two men involved, they had been asked if they were either Liverpool or “Manchester” fans due to the fact that they were wearing “casual clothes”.

This comes after club officials met with Italian authorities to discuss the safety of Liverpool fans, following the vicious assault by two AS Roma supporters on 53-year-old Sean Cox outside Anfield during last week’s first leg.

Cox was left in a critical condition and had to placed in a coma as a result of the injuries he sustained.

In response, AS Roma, Liverpool FC and UEFA condemned the actions of the two fans. However, the Merseyside club has felt it necessary to set out a series of security measures in order to ensure there is no repeat of said incident.

5,000 Liverpool fans have travelled to Rome for the match, and they have been requested to comply with the following safety instructions to the best of their abilities:

  • Supporters should meet at Piazza del Popolo and Piazza di Spagna before using the shuttle service.
  • Supporters are strongly adviced to use shuttle buses from Piazza delle Canestre, Villa Borghese starting from 4pm. Under no circumstances should supporters attempt to walk to the Stadio Olimpico.
  • Fans are advised to arrive at the stadium as early as possible, with gates due to open at 5pm.
  • Italian law requires the name on match tickets to match the name on any personal ID. Admission is likely to be refused in situations where this is not the case.
  • The post-match hold-back is expected to be longer than usual, although the game will be replayed on big-screens during this time. This could be as late as 1Am, according to authorities.
  • Once the hold-back is over, supporters will be returned to the city via shuttle buses unless on chartered flights.
  • Shuttle services will operate once supporters leave the stadium. This will take two runs under full police escort with fans being returned to Villa Borghese.
  • At Villa Borghese, coaches will be available to transfer supporters to Flumicino Airport. Supporters are advised again not to walk back to the city under any circumstances.
  • In keeping with police advice, supporters should not travel alone or wear colours and their co-operation with the authorities is urged at all times.
  • Supporters are reminded to respect monuments of national importance with a particular emphasis placed on not hanging banners and/or scarves on fountains and statues.
  • Drinking alcohol on the streets is prohibited.
  • Avoid areas in the north of the city, particularly those in the vicinity of Ponte Milvio Bridge, on matchday.
  • Supporters not in possession of a valid match ticket should not to approach the stadium and seek entry. If detected, they will be detained for the duration of the match as a minimum.

Approximately 1,200 Italian police officers will be on duty as the game draws 60,000 spectators to the stadium.