Security fears over Champions League final as Man City fans told to arrive at stadium NINE HOURS before kick-off | The Sun

Security fears over Champions League final as Man City fans told to arrive at stadium NINE HOURS before kick-off | The Sun


MANCHESTER CITY fans have been told to arrive NINE HOURS early for Saturday's Champions League final.

Pep Guardiola's side travel to Istanbul to take on Inter Milan, aiming to win their first ever Champions League crown.

City will be well backed by supporters flocking to Turkey this weekend, with authorities keen to avoid the distressing scenes that occurred at last year's final.

Ticketing issues and errors by heavy-handed cops at last year's Paris final endangered Liverpool supporters in attendance.

After initially trying to dodge the blame, Uefa chiefs eventually launched a review into the ticket chaos, and have new recommendations for this season's showpiece event.

Talks have been held between Uefa and local cops, with the former believing that some elements of the policing may be beyond their control.

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Uefa have managed to get a U-turn on initially proposed bans for items such as rainbow flags and clothing featuring the word "ultra".

But fans are still being recommended to arrive nine hours early for the game, which kicks off at 10pm local time.

Ataturk Stadium, where Liverpool famously won their fifth Champions League in 2005, is situated more than an hour west of Istanbul city centre.

It is served by a metro station, but Uefa chiefs are urging fans to board shuttle buses at 1pm instead.

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Once at the stadium, ticket holders will be invited to join a fanzone opening at 2pm – where food and beer will be on sale.

Fans will have to pass through THREE separate security checkpoints before entering the ground.

The first will require their phone bluetooth to be switched on as tickets are activated.

They will then be searched twice – once by police and a further time by a private security firm.

Metro trains are expected to stop running at 11:50pm – although shuttle buses back into the city centre will be put on until 3am.

No booze will be available to fans once inside the stadium, although the fan park will reopen for a short period after the match.

Fan group Football Supporters' Europe have been working hard to ensure that there is no repeat of last year's Uefa farce.

Ahead of this weekend's final, their chief operating officer Niamh O'Mahony said: "Since last year’s final in Paris and also the review recommendations, we’ve seen a significant change in how Uefa works with us to prepare for the finals this year.

"FSE was part of a pre-final site visit, been able to hear plans, and give advice on how best to approach certain scenarios.

"That doesn’t mean all of our advice is being taken on board but it is considered, and that is an important change.

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"FSE’s role is to constructively challenge the planning so that supporters in Istanbul can enjoy their trip and all the effort into planning will be worth it.

"Of course, we’ll have to wait and see what happens now but a huge amount of preparation has been happening."

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