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Sunday 4 December 2016

Policing 'solution' agreed for West Ham-Chelsea tie

Published 20/10/2016 | 22:16

The Metropolitan Police Service says a
The Metropolitan Police Service says a "tactical solution" has been established for the London Stadium

The Metropolitan Police Service says a " tactical solution" is now set for matches at West Ham's London Stadium, which would see officers deployed inside the ground if needed for the EFL Cup tie against Chelsea.

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West Ham moved from Upton Park into the converted Olympic Stadium for the start of the new season.

The club and London Stadium owner E20, along with stadium operators LS185, had requested a police presence at future matches following crowd disturbances during some Premier League fixtures at their new home, including those against both Watford and Middlesbrough.

Recent matches have seen an increased line of segregation and also more stewards, as well as improved levels of training.

However, additional policing measures have not been able to be implemented inside the stadium throughout the games because of the lack of the Airwave radio system, which is used by the emergency services, a problem highlighted two years ago.

Chelsea have been allocated some 5,182 tickets for the cup tie, which has been designated as a high-risk fixture given the history of animosity between the two sets of rivals supporters.

Following talks with the relevant authorities and parties involved, the MPS has now been able to establish a workable set-up, which is understood will allow officers to communicate with a control vehicle on the stadium perimeter.

A statement read: "The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) has a comprehensive policing plan for the match on Wednesday October 26 between West Ham United and Chelsea. The MPS is working with partners to prevent crime and disorder.

"The MPS has a tactical solution for matches being held at the London Stadium which will allow the safe deployment of officers into the stadium, if required, to deal with any crime or disorder.

"The MPS, working with London Stadium and Airwave, are confident that a full in-building radio solution will be operational at the London Stadium in February 2017."

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