'Strong police presence' planned for sell-out Plymouth Argyle v Exeter City derby

Home Park at Sunset
The Devon derby kicks off at 8pm on Monday 31 October at Home Park in Plymouth. Credit: Plymouth Argyle

Fans causing trouble at the Plymouth Argyle v Exeter City game will be 'dealt with swiftly', police have warned.

Devon and Cornwall Police officers are preparing for 16,000 fans to attend the sell-out derby at Home Park on Monday (31 October).

Chief Inspector Julian Pezzani says police forces across the country have been seeing a rise in the number of flares being used at football games.

Avon and Somerset Police officers will also be attending to provide support to the force.

“The vast majority of those in attendance will be supporters who simply want to enjoy a good match", he said.

"That said, a strong police presence will be in Plymouth throughout the day and anyone who is intent on causing a disturbance will be dealt with swiftly and robustly.

“Since crowds have been able to return to stadiums, we have seen nationally a rise in the number of pyros such as flares being used within and around football grounds.

“Not only is this dangerous to spectators and will see offending clubs fined by the FA, possession of a smoke bomb or flare is itself a crime."

Exeter City will travel to Home Park in Plymouth for match day Credit: ITV West Country

He added that anyone attempting to enter the stadium with one will be refused entry and runs the risk of arrest.

Plymouth Argyle’s Head of Venue, Christian Kent, said: “Plymouth Argyle is a family club, and we have a zero-tolerance approach to anti-social behaviour.”

A spokesman for Exeter City Football Club said: "Monday's game is something that our supporters have been looking forward to since the fixtures were released; we hope they will show their pride and passion for our club in the right manner.

"We urge all Exeter City fans to travel on official coaches and for those travelling by train to be respectful to fellow passengers."

The match begins at 8pm and will be broadcast on Sky Sports.