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Celtic and police to probe Old Firm ‘crush’

Scottish Premiership football club Celtic and Scotland Police have said they are reviewing procedures after five people were injured while attending yesterday’s (Sunday’s) Old Firm match against Rangers.

Celtic won the meeting of the Glasgow rivals 1-0, but home fans reported severe congestion under the north stand at Celtic Park before kick-off.

Celtic fans claim a change to stadium entry points led to some supporters being forced to climb over a high fence to escape a crush. One fan was taken to hospital after falling from a wall, while the others made it into the match after being treated at the scene.

One supporter, who did not wish to be named, told BBC Scotland: “People couldn’t walk round the stadium anymore so there was a bottleneck under the north stand. Suddenly there was an absolute crush because there were about 1,000 people trying to get one way and about 1,000 trying to go the other way. The corridor is only six to seven people wide.”

The Celtic fan added that it took 30 to 40 minutes to move 300 yards, but the situation eventually resolved itself as police and club officials stopped people moving into the area. He said: “The people at fault are the police for shutting the access and Celtic for not thinking about how the people flow would go.”

Ch Supt Brian McInulty, of Police Scotland, said: “We work closely with Celtic Football Club to ensure the safety of all fans attending matches. We plan and practice various scenarios to ensure that if an incident occurs it will be dealt with as quickly as possible, as happened in this case. We will review today’s incident and work with Celtic to ensure any learning is quickly put in place.”

In a club statement, Celtic added: “We are aware of the issues caused by congestion prior to kick-off. We are pleased that stewards and police were able to assist quickly and we thank our supporters for their patience shown while the matter was being dealt with.

“We will work closely with police to investigate and review this matter. The safety of our supporters will always be our priority.”

Image: Zhi Yong Lee