POLICE in Scotland have issued a stark warning to anyone planning on causing disorder at tomorrow’s Celtic v Rangers football match that they will be met with the “full force of the law”.
Thousands of people are expected to descend on Glasgow tomorrow (December 30) for a day of shopping, football or pre-Hogmanay celebrations.
Scottish police are advising the public to “drink responsibly” and plan their outings in advance, whilst warning those intent on causing trouble that it will not be tolerated.
Match Commander Superintendent Alan Murray said: “I envisage that the majority of supporters will come and enjoy the game and leave safely. However, that small minority determined to cause disorder, anti-social or offensive behaviour will be met with the full force of the law.
“Officers will actively tackle those who put the safety of others at risk, before they do it. Our policing approach is about early intervention, prevention and engagement and people should expect to see more officers proactively targeting the small amount of people intent on drinking to excess or behaving badly.”
Extra officers will be on patrol throughout Glasgow tomorrow, ahead of the much anticipated Old Firm derby, in order to prioritise ‘public safety’.
Supt Murray explained: “This is no doubt an exciting weekend for many people, whether it’s to enjoy a day of shopping at the sales, attending a football match or gearing up to celebrate the New Year.
“It does mean that the city will be busier throughout the day and night. Together with our partners, we have comprehensive policing plans in place to account for this with the public’s safety our priority.”
He added: "Given the time of year, it would be expected that alcohol will play a part in some of the activities but I would urge people to drink responsibly, plan your outing in advance and ensure you stay with friends and family who know where you are. Expect to see more officers in and around stadiums, shopping centres, on approaches to Glasgow and in the city centre itself.
“I completely understand that people want to have a good time and for some, that means drinking alcohol. However the safety of people visiting the stadium or just the city of Glasgow itself, is our priority and I would urge people not to drink when coming to the stadium, as you’ll not get in. Know how you’re getting home and plan ahead.
“We want to keep people safe whilst they enjoy football, parties and celebrations.”
There will be also be pre and post match cordons near Celtic Park at Kinloch Street, and at the Emirates complex at London Road and Springfield Road.