31/12/2009 12:22,
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Police advice for FA Cup tie

Greater Manchester Police is preparing for United's FA Cup encounter with Leeds at Old Trafford on Sunday.

Working with both clubs, the FA and West Yorkshire Police, GMP has been planning for several weeks to ensure the fixture is a safe and enjoyable occasion for the tens of thousands of fans who will be at the stadium.

A substantial policing operation will be in place around the stadium and across Greater Manchester to help genuine fans have an enjoyable and memorable experience.

Superintendent John Graves, who is the match commander, said: "I would like to wish everyone a very happy new year ahead of this exciting FA Cup tie.

"It is the first game of the year for both clubs and a tie that is set to showcase everything that is great about this cup competition.

"It has been several years since these clubs met and it is a highly anticipated fixture for both sets of fans. Our aim is to help make the occasion a safe and enjoyable one for everyone involved.

"Greater Manchester Police is very experienced at policing football matches and major events, and this game will be no exception. We have an extensive operation involving officers and resources from across the Force to both deal with any incidents and offer reassurance to the public."

A key part of GMP's operation is to deter the small minority of people who may travel to the game intending to cause trouble, and to respond to any incidents of disorder or anti-social behaviour quickly and robustly. GMP is urging those without tickets not to travel.

The availability of alcohol will be substantially restricted within the stadium and across Greater Manchester. Supt Graves added: "Everyone connected with this event has a responsibility to do all they can to make this a safe and enjoyable occasion, especially local businesses and travel operators.

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