Man United to review security after pitch invader had toy guns

Man who got on the pitch during Champions League loss to Juventus had a plastic gun

A man was restrained on the pitch during Manchester United’s Champions League loss to Juventus at Old Trafford. Photo: Getty Images

A man was restrained on the pitch during Manchester United’s Champions League loss to Juventus at Old Trafford. Photo: Getty Images

 

Manchester United have launched a review into their security protocols after it emerged a pitch invader got into Old Trafford with two toy guns during last month’s Champions League game against Juventus.

Shortly after play got under way during the hosts’ 1-0 defeat by the Italian champions, a fan ran across the pitch and was restrained by stewards close to the players.

Manchester United said the safety of fans was an “absolute priority” for the club. “Carrying a children’s miniature plastic toy gun into a stadium is clearly an extremely irresponsible act,” said a spokesperson.

“Fortunately, the actions of the pitch intruder at the Juventus game did not harm anyone. However, as the security and safety of all fans and staff is the absolute priority at Manchester United, the club immediately launched an investigation into the circumstances around this issue. This includes a full review of our already rigorous security protocols, using our own security teams together with external expert consultants.”

At the time of the incident, Greater Manchester Police confirmed to Press Association Sport that one man in his forties was kept in custody overnight, having been arrested on suspicion of pitch invasion.

Uefa has charged Manchester United for the “field invasion”. The case will be dealt with by the Uefa control, ethics and disciplinary body on November 22nd.

There have been other security concerns at Old Trafford in recent history. In November 2016 two fans hid in a toilet overnight after leaving a stadium tour party, in the hope of watching Manchester United play Arsenal the following day. In September 2016 a match against Bournemouth was cancelled after a fake bomb went unnoticed inside the stadium for four days. It emerged that it had been left behind after a training exercise.

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