Thursday, March 14, 2013

Best behaviour

It's not often that the misconduct of our fans draws more attention than that of our players, but, judging by the stern ticking-off and warning from head of security Steve Storey, the club are clearly getting a bit jumpy ahead of tonight's second-leg tie against Anzhi.

"We've never fallen foul where UEFA are concerned before this season. Our fans have rightly been recognised as exemplary and they have proven that it doesn't take items such as flares, which are banned, to make an incredible atmosphere.

Sadly, a small element has acted in a manner in previous rounds - and particularly in the last Europa League game here against Metalist - which has threatened to damage that reputation. Not only have they endangered safety, they've also made coming to the match very uncomfortable for law-abiding fans directly around them and spoilt it for the majority.

We're working hard to combat all types of antisocial behaviour in and around St. James' Park. It's simply not welcome and make no mistake; there will be bans for offenders and further action taken by the police."

So, best behaviour demanded - and with good reason, given that UEFA have already taken sanctions against Fenerbahce and Lazio on the same grounds.

Meanwhile, there have also been pre-match warnings for the Silver Fox - courtesy of Brendan Rodgers, whose Liverpool side came up against the Russians in the group stage. The Reds lost in Moscow but triumphed on home turf. Here's hoping we can put to good use all the knowledge gleaned from Rodgers and our own scouting reports and analysis.

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