Behaviour Warning For Rangers And Celtic Fans
27 December 2018, 17:13
Police have urged Rangers and Celtic supporters to take responsibility for their actions ahead of the Old Firm derby on Saturday.
The match at Ibrox will be the second meeting between the teams this season, following the first fixture at Celtic Park in September which Celtic won 1-0.
Officers have issued a warning to fans not to throw any coins or missiles during the game, following a series of incidents in Scottish football this season.
Superintendent Mark Sutherland said: "I know the majority of the supporters attending the matches are well-behaved and enjoy the game. However, we know from previous matches that there is a small minority who may take the decision to become involved in dangerous and criminal anti-social behaviour.
"There have been well-documented and concerning incidents at matches this season including missile and coin throwing. Missiles, including coins, thrown from distance or height are extremely dangerous and risks serious personal injury to anyone struck.
"Supporters of both teams should also take personal responsibility for their own actions, respect each other and those around them. I would expect and urge genuine supporters of both clubs to challenge the behaviour of anyone who behaves in an ill-judged way and report anything that concerns them to stewards in the first instance.
"My advice for anyone going to the match at Ibrox is to plan your travel, arrive in plenty of time to get into the stadium safely, and drink responsibly. But most of all enjoy the match, the unique atmosphere and occasion."
The ticket allocation for away fans at matches between the two clubs was cut this season, with Celtic expected to have around 750 supporters in attendance.
The club previously considered not taking any tickets for Saturday's match, which kicks off at 12.30pm, over safety fears and it has told fans without a ticket not to travel to Ibrox.
Police Scotland has advised all supporters, and in particular Celtic fans, to plan their journey in advance, with changes planned for access to the stadium.
Mr Sutherland said: "Police Scotland has planned extensively and worked closely with both clubs and a wide range of partners with the safety of the public as our number one priority. We want everyone to go to, watch and get home safely after the match.
"On Saturday we want the focus to be on the football and I am urging the thousands of supporters attending the match, and watching on television or in pubs and clubs, to behave responsibly."