Manchester: No city centre screens for Champions League final

The Champions League Final will not be shown on big screens in Manchester, the City Council said today.

The decision comes after Manchester was invaded by more than 100,000 football fans yesterday.

Glasgow Rangers fans and a smaller number of Zenit St Petersburg fans poured into the city for a day of carousing ahead of the Uefa Cup Final between the two teams at the City of Manchester Stadium.

Thousands of ticketless fans watched the game on three big screens around the city centre but violence erupted when a screen in Piccadilly Gardens failed to work just before kick-off.

Manchester City Council had considered erecting screens to show the Manchester United v Chelsea match in Moscow next Wednesday but no firm plans had been made, according to a council spokeswoman.

Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council, said he did not want to cause disruption to the city centre’s 20,000 residents and more than 100,000 workers and visitors.

He said: “We are sorry to disappoint Manchester United fans but it is obvious that because of the impact on residents, businesses and city centre users, there can be no big screen showing of the Champions League final.

“I think after what happened last night it wouldn’t be acceptable to them to a week later have big screens in the city centre.

“I know it’s going to be disappointing but it’s the only reasonable thing we and the police can do.”

Leese said the violence would not stop Manchester from holding major sporting events again.

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