Liverpool take 'exceptional measure' in attempt to ensure fans' safety in Rome

Roma supporters ahead of the game at Anfield. Photo: David Ornstein via Twitter @bbcsport_david

Liverpool have taken the "exceptional" step of requesting a meeting with UEFA, Roma and Italian police to address concerns over fan safety at next week's Champions League tie.

Press Association Sport understands the club have become increasingly frustrated with the lack of detailed arrangements in response to their request for clarity on a number of security issues for Wednesday's semi-final second leg and want the issues sorted on Friday.

Liverpool have sold 5,000 tickets for the match and are keen to get assurances over safety after the attack prior to the first leg at Anfield which left 53-year-old fan Sean Cox in a critical condition and led to two Roma fans being arrested and charged.

Despite several meetings and lengthy correspondence they remain troubled by the lack of evidence of planning put in place.

Liverpool want answers on issues like plans for a safe shuttle service for fans from the Stadio Olimpico - with the club prepared to meet additional costs - what time turnstiles open, which areas of the city are to be avoided and what safe routes are available if there is no shuttle service.

Supporters also face identity checks at the turnstiles after Roma requested each ticket be individually named, creating concerns there could be significant bottlenecks entering the stadium.

A delegation from the club, which raised fears immediately the draw was made, was due to travel to Rome on Thursday in the hope of getting some answers.

A statement from the club read: "The club has taken the exceptional measure of requesting an extraordinary meeting in the Italian capital, which will take place on Friday, April 27.

"Present at the meeting will be all the major stakeholders, who share responsibility for the wellbeing of Liverpool supporters making the journey to watch the Champions League tie.

"At the behest of Liverpool, club officials will join AS Roma, UEFA and the relevant Italian police and security services to discuss specific on-going concerns.

"Liverpool have sought clarity on a number of issues surrounding the matchday operation since the draw was made and is hoping this extraordinary meeting will provide the necessary reassurances and essential information.

"This, if provided, will allow the club to fully inform supporters of the measures that will be in place.

"The club thanks its fans for their on-going engagement on this issue and would hope to provide a detailed update following the meeting."

Supporters without tickets have been advised not to travel to the Italian capital for the tie, which Liverpool lead 5-2 from the first leg.

- PA

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