Police enforce strict rules on England fans to prevent trouble in Naples ahead of Italy game
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Police are preparing for potential chaos in Naples by enforcing strict rules on England fans ahead of the Italy football game.
The Three Lions will face Italy in their first qualification match for Euro 2024 at the city's Diego Armando Maradona Stadium tonight (23 March).
As always, crowds are expected to get rowdy.
It's believed that around 2,500 England fans will be making the trip over to Naples to support the team.
But the event is in danger of descending into potential violence, with fears that local ultras - aggressive and fanatic footy supporters - will show up.
As such, authorities have set out a number of safeguards to prevent issues as best they can, including a sweeping alcohol ban ahead of tonight's game.
Signed by Naples mayor Gaetano Manfredi, the ban prohibits the sale of booze in the stadium and surrounding areas in the city from 7am until midnight today.
Per the council website, the ruling applies to the sale of 'beverages in bottles, cans, glass containers, rigid plastics, tetrapaks or any other material as well as the sale and administration of alcoholic beverages and spirits'.
According to the Daily Mail, drinking in the city centre hasn't been allowed since midday.
Alongside the booze ban, additional police have been dispatched to potential hotspots in the city centre, including the train station and port area.
And while tickets can normally be retrieved from collection points, they are now only available electronically to avoid large crowds from forming to create potential targets for violent supporters.
The outlet went on to point out that England's FA website has advised people not to wear belts as these could be removed by police who might consider them potential weapons, and the same goes for phone chargers and power banks.
From 4pm today, around 20 buses are available to transport England fans from the port to the stadium as yet another measure to prevent trouble.
Local prefect Claudio Palomba told the paper that Naples authorities had been liaising with British police to draft up the rules.
"There has been an exchange of information between us and British colleagues and we have agreed a security plan for the match," he said.
"Buses will be laid on for the English supporters from the port to the stadium but we appreciate others may want to take public transport.
"Every effort is being made to avoid any possible confrontation."
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