Millwall tie bubbling up

NEXT Tuesday s Carling Cup showdown between West Ham and Millwall is warming up nicely thanks to a row over tickets for the Lions supporters. The Hammers had originally agreed to give Millwall 3,000 tickets for the game, but on police advice this was redu

NEXT Tuesday's Carling Cup showdown between West Ham and Millwall is warming up nicely thanks to a row over tickets for the Lions supporters.

The Hammers had originally agreed to give Millwall 3,000 tickets for the game, but on police advice this was reduced when it was decided that the away fans would only be allocated seats in the Sir Trevor Brooking lower stand.

West Ham season ticket holders in both the lower and the upper tiers are also being moved to other parts of the ground.

That gave Millwall some 1,500 tickets for the second round match, and led to a protest by the club to the Metropolitan Police, with their managing director Andy Ambler stating: "It would seem to us to be far more sensible to give as many Millwall supporters the chance to watch the match safely and securely within the visitors' section at the ground."


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And now a compromise has been reached with the police allowing an extra 800 visiting fans into Upton Park for the London derby clash.

Ambler said: "Whilst I'm pleased that we have managed to obtain more tickets, I remain dissatisfied that we have not been granted the 3,000 we feel we need to satisfy the demand.

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"An allocation of 3,000 would be well within our entitlement according to the regulations of the competition and I will be making our views clear to the relevant authorities."

It does seem strange that the police chose to cut Millwall's allocation, as 3,000 fans can surely not cause many more problems than the 2,300 they are now allowing to come.

Crowds in the Carling Cup have held up reasonably well at Upton Park in past seasons, but elsewhere the competition is struggling to attract supporters, so to turn away some that want to come seems a strange decision.

West Ham boss Gianfranco Zola may well have been considering resting players after the clash against Spurs 48 hours earlier, but League One outfit Millwall are no pushovers, and any such plan could backfire, as it did at Watford last season in a dismal 1-0 defeat.

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