Rome prepares itself ahead of AS-Roma-Feyenoord Europa League match

Feyenoord fans

 ROME – On Thursday, AS Roma will play the Dutch team Feyenoord in the quarter-final return leg of the Europa League. Tensions are high and the city is already getting prepared ahead of expected confrontations between fan bases even though attendance by Dutch Feyenoord fans has been banned, according to the Roman police force.

 On Wednesday, 24 hours before kick-off, the Eternal City’s protective measures are already being instated ahead of worries for a repeat of Dutch fan violence. In Feb. 2015, Dutch fans gathered at the Spanish steps and vandalised Bernini’s “La Baraccia” fountain as well as targeting local shops and monuments.

However, a similar fan ban did not stop fans of German fans side Eintracht Frankfurt causing huge trouble in Naples during their Champions League match against Napoli last month.

 Around 2,000 officers have been placed around key “red” areas in Rome including Termini and Tiburtina station, and the historic centre. In these “red zones”, there will be a high police presence as well as the closure of certain roads.

 Only AS Roma fans will be permitted to approach the Olimpico stadium in the north of Rome, where the match is taking place. The away-fans section of the stadium has also been closed and the area around the stadium will have a high police presence.

 Despite these preparative measures, there are fears that Dutch fans will reach the capital via high speed trains from neighbouring cities such as Naples – and have managed to secure tickets to the match via resellers despite the ban.