Danish Police Put on UEFA Cup Final Red Alert

Published May 15th, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

Danish police are on a state of maximum alert ahead of Wednesday's UEFA Cup final between Turkish giants Galatasaray and Arsenal of the English Premiership at the Parken stadium in Copenhagen. 

Danish police fear trouble following the murder of two Leeds fans attending last month's semifinal first leg tie against Galatasaray in Istanbul. 

A report in Sunday's British Observer newspaper gave further cause for worry with a suggestion that a 200-strong band of hooligans made up of supporters from Leeds, Chelsea, Rangers, Cardiff and Swansea were planning to travel to Copenhagen on a reprisal mission for the Leeds' fatalities. 

Andy Smith, chief of the group of British officers following potential dangerous elements among the visiting fans, told Denmark's Extra Bladet newspaper that "Leeds fans will be coming to Copenhagen". 

"We're taking these reports very seriously," Flemming Steen Munch, spokesman for the Danish capital's police force, said Monday. 

Uniformed and plain-clothed officers on Monday started patrolling city center bars, restaurants and cafes to prevent any clashes between rival fans. Numerous small shopholders around the ground have decided to shut down for the day of the match. 

Another worry for officers, according to Smith, was the danger of the 25,000 fans coming into contact inside the ground. 

"We don't know how many Turks or English have bought tickets in neutral zones in the stadium," he told Extra Bladet - (AFP) 


© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)

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