Sheffield Wednesday: Early start can help keep peace

Chris Kirkland receives treatment after being attacked in the Wednesday v Leeds game

Chris Kirkland receives treatment after being attacked in the Wednesday v Leeds game

0
Have your say

TOMORROW’s early kick-off represents an attempt to avoid crowd trouble after the stormy clash between Leeds and Wednesday at Hillsborough.

The switching of the Elland Road start from 3pm to 12.30 came on the advice of the police, who have appealed for calm this time.

Unlike the meeting between the clubs in October, tomorrow’s match is not being televised.

The October match saw an assault on Chris Kirkland by a Leeds fan who went on to the pitch after the away side equalised.

There was also abusive chanting by Leeds supporters towards Dave Jones, who described them as “vile animals” and called on them to be banned from away games. He later apologised for appearing to tar all Leeds fans with the same brush

Leeds fans also caused damage to the West Stand. Wednesday supporters received criticism from Leeds for their chanting, which appeared to have been retaliatory.

Leeds apologised for the behaviour of the fan who attacked Kirkland. He was later jailed for 16 weeks and banned from football grounds for five years.

Kirkland completed the match. He later spoke of his “shock” when he was assaulted. The incident marred a 1-1 draw that Jones described as a “great game.”