The Premier League match between Manchester United and Liverpool has been postponed after supporters invaded Old Trafford and stormed the pitch ahead of the game. Read here why Manchester United v/s Liverpool Postponed.
Fans arrived at Old Trafford at 1 pm to denounce the Glazer ownership with signs and flares – but tensions quickly deteriorated, as some protesters broke down walls to force their way through the stadium and onto the pitch ahead of one of the season’s most important games. When they stormed onto the ground, chants of “we want Glazers down” could be heard. When over a thousand supporters protested against the ownership, Goal recognizes that some fans threatened to enter the locker rooms.
Manchester United v/s Liverpool Postponed: The Incident
— Red Issue (@RedIssue) May 2, 2021
The demonstrations were sparked by the European Super League’s unsuccessful plans, with fans venting their rage at the Glazer family and attempting to press through the 50+1 fan ownership concept seen in Germany. It was the first organized rally by the fans since the ESL fiasco almost two weeks earlier.
The footage then surfaced on social media with some fans on the pitch at Old Trafford after breaking into the stadium about 2 p.m. Many supporters held flares and signs, protested about the club’s management, and some even kicked a football across the field and stood on the goal nets.
— 🍟™️ (@MercurialManc) May 2, 2021
The attackers were initially evacuated from the ground. Police were clearing litter from the playing field. The game was set to begin at 4.30 pm.
However, more supporters later broke into the stadium. Although they were ultimately ushered out. There was much uncertainty on whether the game could go ahead. When 4.30 pm passed with no kick-off until an official announcement was finally issued more than an hour after the planned start time.
Players and coaches were not at the stadium at the time. They were told to stay at their squad hotels while the game was in question. Any club employees and members of the media were being detained in a car park until a decision was taken.
The Manchester United Supporters’ Trust has stated protests against the Glazer family. Glazer family owns the club, at and around Old Trafford Stadium.
“The following discussion between police, the Premier League, Trafford Council, and the clubs, our match against Liverpool has been postponed. This is due to safety and security considerations around the protest today. Discussions will now take place with the Premier League on a revised date for the fixture. Our fans are passionate about Manchester United, and we completely acknowledge the right to free expression and peaceful protest. However, we regret the disruption to the team and actions which put other fans, staff, and the police in danger. We thank the police for their support and will assist them in any subsequent investigations.”
Liverpool has issued a statement. They said that they were “all in accordance” with the decision to postpone the game.
The statement read: “It is our position that public safety must be the number one factor in any such decision, with the ability to provide a secure environment for the participants, staff, and officials being a particular priority. This couldn’t be guaranteed today due to a situation that escalated rapidly. We will continue to have a dialogue with Manchester United, the Premier League. And the local authorities to find a suitable date to reschedule. As soon as we have this information we will update our supporters accordingly.”
Reason For Protest
Manchester United supporters have been vocal in their opposition to the Glazer family’s control of the club after the American family purchased it in 2005.
They paid about £790 million ($1.1 billion) for the club in a leveraged buyout. The buyout was covered by debt that will be repaid by the club’s projected earnings. Since then, the club has paid out more than £1 billion (€1.4 billion) in bank payments and dividends to the owners.
Although there have been demonstrations over the years, they have increasingly escalated due to the club’s participation in the ESL initiative.
Joel Glazer was a driving force behind the now-failed proposals, which has reignited outrage among fans who want the Glazer family to sell their stake in the club.