MANCHESTER, England (AP) – Manchester United supporters stormed into the stadium and onto the pitch, delaying Sunday’s game against Liverpool as thousands of supporters gathered outside Old Trafford to demand that the owned by the Glazer family sells the club.
Long-standing anger against the US owners escalated after participating in the failed attempt to get United into a European Super League.
“Get out of our club,” chanted fans as flares went off. “We want Glazers to come out.”
The family, who also own the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers, have refused to engage with fans since buying United in 2005 in a leveraged takeover that increased the debt of the club.
Fans currently cannot attend games due to the pandemic, but they have found a way to enter the stadium. They also climbed on viewpoints next to the turnstile entrances
Supporters wore green and gold scarves and also set off flares in the colors of the club’s 1878 roster. More than 100 fans entered the stadium and some could be seen from the windows waving to the protesters. Corner flags were held aloft and a supporter was seen throwing a tripod from the interview area.
Mounted police then evacuated protesting supporters from outside the stadium, as glass bottles were thrown away in brief clashes. Some supporters returned to a main road near the stadium, with police forming a line to prevent them from returning.
If United lose Sunday’s game, Manchester City have won the Premier League title. United are the record 20-time England champions, but haven’t lifted the trophy since 2013.
Kick-off time was originally scheduled for 4.30 p.m. local time (3.30 p.m. GMT) but has been delayed, with no announcement as to whether the game will continue without either team having made it to the ground so far.
United and Liverpool were among six Premier League clubs that attempted to form an exclusive European Super League with three clubs each from Spain and Italy. Widespread opposition quickly ended the project, with all six England teams withdrawing within 48 hours of the announcement.
The “Big 6” clubs have been controlling the damage ever since, offering various forms of apologies and declarations of regret, while fans long frustrated with billionaire owners have called for global changes.
Calling all super HuffPost fans!
Sign up to become a Founding Member and help shape the next chapter of HuffPost