The two clubs have combined to ask supporters for calm after a two-legged Europa League tie full of off-field controversy last season
Liverpool and Manchester United have issued a joint statement to calm tensions ahead of Monday night’s clash between the Premier League rivals, with fans warned they will be ejected or even prosecuted for engaging in “discriminatory behaviour.”
The Reds host Jose Mourinho’s side in a rare evening game between the sides to round off the Premier League weekend on Monday.
Fixtures deemed high risk by police or security forces are often scheduled earlier in the day to help prevent any trouble, but when these sides met in the Europa League last season they played two late games and were both fined by Uefa for improper chanting.
Liverpool were fined £30,553, half of which was suspended for two years, for illicit chants, and were fined a further £13,000 for the setting off of fireworks, throwing of objects, crowd disturbances and kicking off late at Anfield.
United were also fined £30,553 for illicit chants, half of which was suspended for two years, as well as £13,750 for blocking stairways, crowd disturbances and the throwing of objects.
And it has pushed the clubs into joining forces and asking supporters to behave at Anfield.
In a joint statement, the clubs said: “Both clubs, their supporters and football fans around the world are looking forward to this historic and passionate match between two of the sport’s biggest and oldest rivals.
“There is great rivalry between our fans and we ask all supporters to be respectful and help eradicate all forms of offensive and discriminatory behaviour from the game.
“If any supporters are found to be engaged in any form of offensive or discriminatory behaviour by stewards or via CCTV then they will be immediately removed from the stadium, risk arrest, prosecution and be reported in accordance with the Club’s ground regulations.
“This is an unrivalled fixture in the Premier League calendar and we thank all fans for their continued support in this important area of the game.”
With the game being broadcast to an estimated 700million people in over 200 countries, the Premier League is keen for no trouble to tarnish the image of its competition.
And a spokesperson from Kick it Out , added: “Both Liverpool and Manchester United should be commended for this proactive approach ahead of this important fixture. We always encourage supporters to report any form of discrimination they may see or hear. Our reporting app, which is available to download from the App Store and Google Play, allows users the option to attach photos and videos.”