Glasgow police promise ‘robust’ operation for Celtic-Linfield game

Riot police on the field following the Linfield-Celtic game at Windsor Park last Friday
Riot police on the field following the Linfield-Celtic game at Windsor Park last Friday

A “robust” policing plan is in place ahead of Linfield’s visit to Glasgow to play Celtic in the return leg of their Champions League tie.

It comes as Linfield and Celtic learned yesterday they would face disciplinary proceedings for incidents during Friday night’s game at Windsor Park.

Linfield face charges relating to objects being thrown and a pitch invasion, while Celtic player Leigh Griffiths will face charges of provoking spectators at the end of the match when he tied a green and white scarf to a goalpost. Celtic’s five yellow cards during the game also triggered a charge of improper conduct.

The charges will be dealt with by UEFA on Thursday.

Following Friday’s game, Linfield said those responsible for throwing items on to the pitch would face “serious and lasting consequences”.

In a subsequent interview chairman Roy McGivern said lifetime bans would be issued to the culprits.

Yesterday he confirmed the probe to identify the offenders was continuing behind the scenes and the club would not make further comment until such times as they had found those responsible.

He added that the club was aware of the discplinary charges but did not wish to comment prior to Thursday.

Linfield players and officials arrived in Glasgow yesterday while most supporters are expected to travel to the city on match day – tomorrow.

Travelling Blues fans have been warned by their club to “do nothing to harm or damage the name of the club you are supporting”.

Police Scotland’s event commander Superintendent Craig Smith said his police force had been working with a range of partners including the PSNI ahead of the game.

He said additional officers would be in place in and around Glasgow.

Mr Smith said: “Anyone who is intent on causing disorder or hate crime can expect to be arrested by police.

“Let’s keep this match focused on the football.”

In the lead up to the game Linfield have been granted use of Rangers training ground in Glasgow – Auchenhowie – which Mr McGivern described as one of the best facilities of its kind in Britain.

Many Linfield fans making the trip will also be welcomed by Rangers before the game for a tour of Ibrox before making their way to Celtic Park.

According to the Celtic website the match is sold out. Linfield fans are expected to bring a travelling support in the region of 1,500.

The all-ticket game kicks off at 7.45pm and will be broadcast live by Celtic’s own TV channel.

The winners of the tie will face either League of Ireland’s Dundalk or Norwegian side Rosenborg in the third qualifying round of the Champions League competition.

Linfield go into the game 2-0 down after goals from Scott Sinclair and Tom Rogic gave the Scottish champions victory at Windsor Park.