German police 'ready for action' ahead of England's Nations League fixture

German police ‘ready for action’ ahead of England’s Nations League fixture

German police ‘ready for action’ ahead of England’s Nations League fixture in Munich – AP

German authorities have drafted in 700 police officers to form a ring of steel security presence ahead of England’s Nations League fixture in Munich on Tuesday.

Potential games between supporters “cannot be completely ruled out”, the local force has admitted, as England supporters gather at venues including the historic Hofbräuhaus beer hall.

England were assigned 3,466 tickets, but it is likely thousands more will be traveling after their fans obtained home tickets in the home areas of the 70,000-seater Allianz Arena. Ahead of the fixture, 880 known troublemakers have given up passports and there are 1,122 banning orders in effect. However, Gareth Southgate and now police have expressed concern over potential disorder.

“Particularly in the case of excessive alcohol consumption or a chance encounter between rival groups of people, possible conflict situations in this context cannot be completely ruled out,” said Benjamin Castro Tellez, a local police spokesman, after being questioned by the German website Abendzeitung .

German reports state that 700 officers are now “ready for action”. Telegraph Sport had already reported how no alcohol will be served in the ground and 12 stewards from Wembley are making the journey to Munich, along with six dedicated spotters, to help the German authorities and police.

“The Munich police are therefore prepared in terms of personnel and strategic planning for various scenarios in this operation and are already in a constant exchange of information with the national football information center in England via the central information center for sports operations (ZIS),” Tellez added.

His comments come after The Times illustrated how easy it was to obtain tickets in the home end, securing a £40 seat by inserting a German hotel address. As it stands around, fewer than 55,000 tickets have been sold in total for Tuesday’s fixture.

On Sunday night, Southgate pleaded with fans to avoid leaving England “embarrassed” and warned a “spotlight” will be on them following previous disorder, including at the Euro 2020 final.

England’s manager spoke specifically of the negative effect that fan misbehavior has on his players immediately before a match. “It definitely has an impact,” he said. Ugly scenes the last time England played in Germany, in 2017, had been cited as a particular low point by the Football Association. Southgate challenged fans to build on Britain’s international reputation after successful celebrations over the weekend for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. “You are embarrassed when you hear about it [the trouble], because you know it’s a representation of your country, in the same way there’s been a brilliant representation of that across the world in the last couple of days,” he added. “So we’re always conscious of that. I think we can only give the correct messages – it’s then you’ve got to rely on people behaving themselves.”

England will continue to play some fringe players as they look to bounce back from a 1-0 defeat in Hungary. The behavior of crowds had also been the talking point in Budapest after schoolchildren allowed inside the supposedly “behind closed doors” fixture booed players for taking the knee.

Following the clash with Germany, it is England’s turn to serve a stadium punishment – over last year’s Wembley Euro final chaos – as they host Italy at a largely empty Molineux Stadium. With a second game behind closed doors suspended for two years, the FA is desperate to avoid a repeat of the embarrassing scenes when England traveled to Dortmund in 2017 and sang anti-German war songs throughout the match. The FA received interest in buying tickets for the Germany game from over 6,000 fans, but it is unclear how many fans are likely to travel in total.

Midfielder Kalvin Phillips joined Southgate in urging fans to behave. “There’s always going to be issues, but we want our fans to go there and be respectful to Munich and be respectful in a different country,” he said. “We’d expect the same back. When Germany came to our country, you know, it was very respectful. The fans support us well and when they behave well and when they act like real fans, which they always do, I think they ‘re no problem.’

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.