Extra Europa Villa Park Measures
If you were wondering why there was the unusual sight of police horses back at Villa Park against Luton Town at the last league home game, it was due to them being a trial run for the forthcoming double-bill of Europa Conference League home games.
It’s been over 20 years since horses were last used at Villa Park and you’d have thought it was simply due to the evolvement of technology and better behaved supporters over the decades. The horses are just part of additional security measures being brought in for the forthcoming European games, with police plans looking to largely follow arrangements made for Villa vs Blues derby games.
Both AZ Alkmaar and Legia Warsaw’s away fans have been in the headlines in recent years. The Alkmaar incident, that had their ultras trying to raid a West Ham VIP stand was largely seen as an isolated incident, and they are largely seen as decent fans. As a result, they have received their full allocation of 2,100 tickets for the Villa Park game.
The truth be told, the main reason behind the extra security measures tested out at the recent Luton game was primarily due to the recent reputation of the Legia away fans.
They didn’t exactly shower themselves in glory at the recent Europa League at the King Power stadium, against Leicester City. They repeatedly attacked stewards, police and the home fans (just search it on Youtube for the evidence). The subsequent reports from the Leicester game have fed into Villa’s and West Midland police’s preparations for the upcoming Villa Park game.
More recently, the Legia away fans were involved with skirmishes with the Dutch police over in Alkmaar, which has got UEFA increasingly involved behind the scenes.
As a result of their fan’s recent misdemeanours, Legia Warsaw will not be receiving a full allocation of 2,100, after discussion between the club, UEFA and other relevant parties.