PSG stepping up security for Champions League clash vs. Red Star - sources
Authorities are stepping up security ahead of Paris Saint-Germain's Champions League Group C game at home to Red Star Belgrade on Wednesday and are prepared for as many as 2,000 travelling supporters at the game, sources have confirmed to ESPN FC.
UEFA banned the Serbian champions' fans from travelling to their club's Group C matches against PSG and Liverpool after violence marred their playoff win over FC Salzburg in August.
However, as reported by L'Equipe, PSG still suspect up to 2,000 away supporters will attend the game at the Parc des Princes and police sources have told ESPN FC that they fear that 100-200 of those could cause serious trouble.
Paris' police prefecture has confirmed to ESPN FC that it has called for riot squads and mobile units to reinforce the usual security setup around the stadium, as well as greater security around the French capital's Place de la Bastille -- home to a significant Serbian immigrant community.
The prefecture confirmed on Tuesday evening that 850 police have been mobilised, while identity checks have been set up at certain key points and transport stations in the city -- which police chief Michel Delpuech explained he will combat the threat of both sets of ultras gathering "at various points of the capital to do battle."
On top of this, sources have confirmed that alcohol will be unavailable in the vicinity of Parc des Princes between 13:55-22:00 local time, while seven mobile units have been raised and 1,000-1,200 stewards will be present.
Following the use of flares by PSG's ultras during last season's defeat to Real Madrid in the round of 16, UEFA have sanctioned the French champions with a partial closure of Parc des Princes -- the offending Auteuil end will be closed and those fans were offered relocation at minimal extra cost.
However, PSG have assured ESPN FC that small areas will be kept free for supporters in case of trouble.
The early kick-off time (18:55 CET) has caused apathy within Les Parisiens' fanbase but a combination of the partial stadium closure and the lack of official travelling support has made the security operation easier and negated the threat of empty seats in the home stands caused by no-shows.