ENGLAND’S World Cup qualifier with Albania is at risk at being axed over police security fears, according to reports.
The Three Lions were due to face their European opponents in the Albanian capital Tirana on Sunday.
England’s clash with Albania on Sunday is at risk of being postponedCredit: PA
But the Albanian Football Association (AFA) have released a statement claiming the safety of both teams cannot be confirmed because the State Police have not taken over its security.
The statement, posted on Albanian Daily News, read: “Today in the Albanian Football Federation a letter arrived from the Local Police Directorate of Tirana which states the structures of the Local Police Directorate Tirana cannot guarantee the taking of measures before, during and after the Albania-England match.
“Faced with the situation where the state authorities did not react after the request of the AFA for the release of spaces on the perimeter of the National Stadium, we request urgent response to these structures.
“The cancellation of the Albania-England match would have catastrophic consequences for the image of our country, the National Team and in general for Albanian Football.”
The AFA have already written to the country’s prime minister to let vaccinated fans attend the contest.
They asked Edi Rama that 30 per cent of the stadium’s capacity – around 6,500 supporters – are able to watch the game at their National Arena.
But there are growing concerns over building structures around the perimeter of the ‘Air Albania’ Stadium as companies look to expand their businesses.
It is claimed that the ‘erection of permanent iron and concrete structures’ on the sidewalks of the stadium pose a serious safety hazard.
AFA have raised concerns the building work falls foul of UEFA guidelines in a letter that read the structures ‘were seriously violating the safety standards for the organization of international matches, but in fact, basic security elements for any match of any nature.’
More to follow…
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