What do have to say for this??
Athens calls on 20,000-strong police force for final
Helena Smith in Athens
Saturday April 21, 2007
Greece's entire 20,000-strong police force will be deployed to prevent violence at the Champions League final in Athens next month, with more than 30,000 fans from the UK expected to attend the match featuring either Liverpool or Chelsea, possibly against Manchester United.
Police squads from across the country will be bussed in to form a security cordon around the city centre ahead of the May 23 game. Officers, including riot police, will be stationed outside hotels, cafes and bars that British supporters are expected to frequent with officials intimating that alcohol consumption will also be curbed. To "free up" other personnel, trainee cadets are to be tasked with traffic policing and other mundane duties on the day.
Greek government and security officials, who are believed to have designed the measures in collaboration with British officers, will fly to the UK on Monday to hold further talks with counterparts from the Association of Chief Police Officers, which oversees policing abroad. Officials said Greek police would also be "working closely" with travel companies and charter flights bringing in fans.
The draconian steps - on a scale with those enacted during the 2004 Athens Olympics - were unveiled as Greece's chief of police, Lt Gen Anastassios Dimoschakis, urged English fans not to travel unless they had a "magic ticket".
Greek police said their worst nightmare was if Liverpool or Chelsea ended up facing Manchester United in the final. The first leg of United's semi-final against Milan is at Old Trafford on Tuesday.
"We advise anyone who cannot get their hands on a ticket not to travel to our country," Dimoschakis told reporters after meeting with other security chiefs and the mayor of Athens. "Security will not just start at the airport in Athens but in [the supporters'] home countries."
Greece's no-nonsense right-wing government announced last week that it would also upgrade and install more security cameras at the 70,000-seat Olympic stadium where the game will be played.
The final is seen as a prelude to the increased security measures the government plans to take to curb domestic hooliganism following the stabbing to death of a 25-year-old Greek football fan in Athens last month.