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Policing of the Derby

Spirit of Shankly and other EFC supporters’ groups attended a meeting at Goodison on the 6th December at the invitation of Merseyside Police and EFC to discuss the policing entry and stewarding arrangements for the forthcoming derby match on the 19th December.

The main points raised where as follows:

1. The fixture is designated by Merseyside Police as a Cat C game, which is not considered the highest risk.

2. There will be about 65 officers on duty, they will be in their usual fluorescent gear and their nine transports will be parked on Priory Road as the officers are being briefed at the ground. They want to adopt the policy they call Firm/Fair/Friendly

3. They have noticed pyrotechnics coming back at matches and so this will be one of their main priorities to look out for.

4. A ‘walk up’ to Goodison has become more popular and it was expected to happen again from around the Twelfth Man pub about an hour to 45 minutes before the game. The police are aware of this, have no problems with it, do not intend to ‘police’ it but will observe. The point they make is that if it sets off too late for kick off then it might have implications for people getting in on time not only those in the walk up but also those arriving at the ground at the same time.

5. At last year’s fixture there were no ejections or arrests.

6. Inside the ground EFC will be operating normal bar activity.

7. Anyone attempting entry to a home section in an LFC shirt or colours will not be allowed in. Any away fans who find themselves in home sections will not be ejected unless they misbehave.

8. There will be barriers in place at the start of the queues for the turnstiles for away fans - and there will be random searches at these barriers away from the turnstiles. Search wands will be used as will dogs searching for pyro and drugs. This is standard practice at Goodison.

9. The Union and Blue Union discussed allocation reductions. LFC supporters are losing out on about 100 tickets due to the front row of the away section being kept empty as well as the rows of seats by the gangway. We asked that rather than the message being that misbehaviour and gangway blocking will see further allocation cuts, could the message be that we would get the allocation back if we can show the gangways are clear. The front row issue is trickier - it is there due to the fact that standing in that row is inherently unsafe as the barrier in front is too low and people could go over the edge.

If EFC can show that the gangways are clear at the game then that gives a better argument to recommend reinstatement of the allocation there.

10. EFC will pass out cards with messages about behaviour as fans enter the away section.

11. There will be 20 LFC stewards assisting in the away end.

12. Coin throwing is being targeted.

13. No hold back is planned.

We would welcome any feedback before and after the fixture to assist these meetings in the future. Email secretary@spiritofshankly.com



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