Liverpool have moved to quickly and emphatically dismiss Italian media claims that up to 1,000 fans heading to Rome on Wednesday should be considered dangerous.
Italian outlet ANSA had cited ‘police sources’ when suggesting that a significant portion of the 5,000-strong Liverpool fan group heading to next week’s Champions League semi-final second leg are ultras, and therefore ‘at risk’ of causing trouble as revenge for the incident outside Anfield that left Irish Liverpool fan Sean Cox fighting for his life in hospital.
The same source suggested that there will be around 1,000 police officers around the Stadio Olimpico and wider area so as to prevent trouble from occurring between the two sets of supporters.
Liverpool supporter liaison Tony Barrett has responded to the suggestion that one fifth of Reds fans will be looking for violence as ‘ridiculous,’ ans pointed to the fans’ record in other cities during their European run this season:
Nothing to substantiate this ridiculous claim. No intelligence, no quotes, no nothing. If a headline figure is wanted, use this one – zero Liverpool supporters have been arrested in Europe this season. https://t.co/56IKY79H77
— Tony Barrett (@TonyBarrett) April 26, 2018
Liverpool have called for a meeting with Roma and UEFA officials, as well as representatives from the Italian police and security services, as they look to see increased mesaures taken to ensure the safety of their fans before, during and after next week’s match in the Italian capital.