Police warn supporters to drink responsibly ahead of Manchester United and City derby

By Danielle Wainwright

Thousands of Manchester football fans will flock to Etihad Stadium next week to watch Manchester United and City clash in one of the most highly-anticipated matches in the UK.

The derby kicks off at 4pm on Sunday September 22 and Greater Manchester Police will be on the scene to prevent acts of hooliganism or abuse that may arise.

Superintendent Stuart Ellison is determined to ensure a safe and friendly football match and has been working closely with both clubs to guarantee a ‘fantastic family atmosphere for everyone to enjoy’.

“The majority of fans in recent derby matches have behaved impeccably,” he said.

“They simply want to enjoy the game and I applaud their behaviour. Incidents of criminality and anti-social behaviour at football games are becoming the exception and this is testament to the behaviour of genuine fans in attendance.

“We are never complacent however and we are prepared for any challenges that may arise and will have officers ready to deal with any incidents of disorder on the day.”

Greater Manchester Police have often policed large spectacles such as this and will be prepared for any challenges they may face when the match kicks off.  

“We want people to come into the city, enjoy the match and the atmosphere and I would ask that they take responsibility for themselves and drink responsibly,” he warned.

Strict laws are put into place across Manchester to prevent the consumption of alcohol on the streets within the alcohol exclusion zone, as well as refusing entry to anyone under the influence of excess alcohol.

Superintendent Ellison continued: “We are well aware that competitive tension and increased alcohol consumption can sometimes provoke abuse and violence at home.

“There will be specialist officers on duty to support victims of domestic abuse. We would encourage anyone who is a victim to contact us as full support and help is available to those in need from both GMP and our partner agencies.”

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