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Football

FA ‘liaising closely’ with Liverpool and Man City on travel issues for cup semi

The Football Association is liaising with Liverpool and Manchester City regarding travel arrangements for supporters ahead of next month’s FA Cup Wembley semi-final in an attempt to minimise expected travel problems.

Engineering works planned for the weekend of April 16-17 mean there are no direct trains to the capital from the north-west, leaving fans of the Premier League’s top two sides with a major headache.

With between 50,000 and 60,000 supporters from the two clubs expected at Wembley, it presents a logistical nightmare.

“The FA will be liaising closely with both Liverpool FC and Manchester City FC on all match arrangements, including supporters travel for the upcoming Emirates FA Cup semi-final fixture at Wembley Stadium, with further details to be announced in due course,” an FA statement read.

“We are also continuing to work with both Network Rail and National Express to find a solution so that supporters of both teams are able to travel to and from the fixture with as minimal disruption as possible.”

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp expressed his surprise that such a situation could be allowed to happen.

“How is that possible? The whole of the north-west is cut off from the rest of England?” he queried after Sunday’s quarter-final win over Nottingham Forest.

“I don’t know which kinds of solutions are available, but I hope somebody finds one. If we could play with supporters, that would be really good for both teams.”

Liverpool supporters’ group Spirit of Shankly and City counterparts 1894 labelled the arrangements as “shambolic”.

“Fan reps of both LFC and Man City are appalled at the shambolic travel arrangements for the prestigious FA Cup semi-final at Wembley,” read a statement on Spirit of Shankly’s Twitter account.

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Football