Man United could face a point deduction after fans were forced to postpone their match with Liverpool
Manchester United could face a point deduction after fans forced the postponement of their Premier League game with Liverpool.
Both the Premier League and the Football Association are investigating the massive protests around Old Trafford on Sunday.
And the organizations are in talks with Manchester United and the local authorities to find out exactly what happened and where the responsibility lies.
Manchester United fans protested at Old Trafford and the match against Liverpool was postponed
The Glazer family, United’s owners, signed the club to the European Super League before turning around 48 hours later amid a furious backlash that fueled Sunday’s protests.
A police helicopter was deployed to guard the stadium after the game was postponed
Under Premier League rules, points can be deducted if a club cannot guarantee the safety of players and staff, as well as getting in and out of the ground.
The Premier League Handbook sets out the requirement for clubs to provide a safe environment for players and officials in Rule K14.
K.14. Each home club also ensures that players and match officials are provided with a safe:
K.14.1. means of entry and exit from the stadium before and after the competition match;
K.14.2. environment in which the league match is played; and
K.14.3. means of entry and exit from the field prior to the kick-off of a league match, at the beginning and at the end
The FA can also impose fines, in a long list of possible penalties, including ground closures and suspension from leagues. And it may require the club responsible for the postponement to reimburse the other party for all costs.
Hundreds of United supporters stormed the field at Old Trafford ahead of their match against Liverpool in protest against the club’s American owners, the Glazer family, before clashing with police in ugly scenes.
The FA and the Premier League have many rules pertaining to game delay and player and staff safety, which will now be investigated by the authorities and the club.
Rule K14 states in the Premier League manual that the home team must ensure that players and match officials can enter and exit the stadium safely and that there is a safe area in which to play the game.
And rule K13 also states that the player entrance, as well as the parking area and points of entry, are adequately monitored or steward.
Representatives from the two teams and the Premier League met on Sunday at 4 p.m. to discuss the situation at Old Trafford, after which it was determined that the game could not go ahead for safety reasons.
Both teams were stopped at their hotels by the Greater Manchester Police, while match referee Michael Oliver was also delayed entering the grounds.
A statement from Greater Manchester Police said: “After discussions with the Premier League, Trafford Council and the clubs, a joint decision was taken to postpone the game for security reasons.”
Some fans put up barriers to swing towards the police lines while attempts were made to clear the area
Tensions escalated when police moved in to remove the protesters from Old Trafford
One of the fans who stormed Old Trafford grabbed the corner flag as they stormed the field before the game
The Premier League has the authority to investigate a rule violation and can arrange a commission of inquiry. The committee’s sanctions include the imposition of a fine or a point deduction.
However, the situation is complicated because the Premier League also has the power to refer the matter to the FA which must be determined by its rules.
Under the FA rulebook, regulation E20 says clubs are responsible for their supporters and can be punished for any inappropriate, violent, threatening, abusive, indecent behavior, including throwing missiles.
Bottles and other projectiles were hurled at the riot officers by the protesting fans
Police tried to clear the crowds from the player entrance and tunnel area at Old Trafford
The crowd that broke the perimeter of Old Trafford gathered in front of the south grandstand, lit smoke flares and sang
Hundreds of Manchester United fans stormed the field at Old Trafford in protest against the club’s American owners ahead of Sunday afternoon’s game with Liverpool
In this case, a torch was also thrown at the Sky Sports TV portal at Old Trafford.
When the Premier League convenes a committee to consider a violation of its rules, it may impose these penalties under Rule W49:
W.49.1. reprimand the defendant;
W.49.2. impose a fine on the defendant for an indefinite period and suspend any part thereof;
W.49.4. in the case of a respondent who is a club:
W.49.4.1. suspend playing in league matches or matches in competitions that are part of the game programs
W.49.4.2. deduct points scored or scored in league matches or other matches referred to in Rule W.49.4.1;
W.49.4.3. recommend to the board that a league match or any other match as referred to in Rule W.49.4.1 should be replayed;
W.49.4.4. recommend that the League remove the Respondent from membership in accordance with the provisions of Rule B.7;
W.49.5. order the defendant to pay unlimited compensation to any person or club (or club);
W.49.7. impose on the defendant any combination of the foregoing or any other penalty as it deems appropriate;
The FA Rules state that in serious cases where “the FA’s investigation concludes that the club concerned has not done enough to prevent and / or address the misconduct of its supporters, disciplinary action may be taken.”
The FA can set up a regulatory commission to investigate any alleged violation of the rules and, if proven, warn a club of future conduct, suspend the club from football activities and impose a fine for a ground lock.
In a statement, Manchester United said: ‘After discussions between the police, the Premier League, Trafford Council and the clubs, our game against Liverpool has been postponed due to safety and security concerns surrounding today’s protest.
Discussions will now take place with the Premier League on a revised date for the game.
‘Our fans are passionate about Manchester United and we fully recognize the right to free speech and peaceful protest.
However, we regret the disruption of the team and the actions that endangered other fans, staff and the police.
“We thank the police for their support and will assist them in any follow-up investigations.”
The Premier League also issued a statement after the game was called off.
‘After the security breach at Old Trafford, the match between Manchester United and Liverpool has been postponed, ‘he said.
This is a collective decision by the police, both clubs, the Premier League and local authorities.
“The security and safety of everyone at Old Trafford remains a top priority. We understand and respect the power of feeling, but condemn all acts of violence, criminal harm and violations, especially given the associated COVID-19 violations.
Fans have many channels to express their views, but the minority actions we see today are unjustified.
‘We sympathize with the police and stewards who have faced a dangerous situation that does not belong in football.
“The luminaire rearrangement will be communicated in due course.”