For the second time in less than two weeks Manchester United’s clash with Liverpool has been disrupted by fan protests prior to the game.
The two sides were originally scheduled to meet at Old Trafford on May 2, though the fixture was eventually called off following fan demonstrations both outside and inside Old Trafford.
What started as a gathering of fans chanting their displeasure at the Glazer ownership and the club’s decision to commit to the much maligned Super League ultimately ended with supporters breaching security and making their way onto the Old Trafford pitch.
Police were forced to attend the ground in a bid to clear the fans off the pitch and despite their successful efforts the game was ultimately cancelled.
The match was rearranged for Thursday 13 May – meaning United were forced to play three games in five days – though the clash was yet again the centre of fan protests.
Hundreds of United fans gathered on Sir Matt Busby Way prior to kick off, while reports soon emerged that the demonstrations had started to turn ugly with a group of fans pushing over a cameraman and his equipment.
The protestors could be heard chanting anti-Glazer songs as they gathered outside Old Trafford, while the Liverpool team bus was also targeted on its way to the team hotel.
The vehicle was blocked in the road before having its tyres deflated, with police forced to provide an escort so it could safely make its way to where the players were staying.
As kick off loomed the crowds began to swell considerably, with protestors clearly doing their utmost to gather on the route they believed the Liverpool bus would be taking on its way to Old Trafford.
By this point the police attendance had also grown in size, with officers wearing riot helmets making a wall in a bid to cordon off the mobile crowd.
Just minutes later the Liverpool team were pictured arriving at Old Trafford, with the bus targeted by fans earlier in the evening presumably used as a decoy vehicle allowing the bus carrying the Reds players to enter the ground almost unnoticed.
Since the Super League’s collapse the Glazer family have reached out to the United fan base in a bid to build bridges following their commital to join the breakaway league, though it seems it’s going to take much more than an open letter from Joel Glazer to repair the damage that has been done.