Friday, 2 March 2007

Milan derby moved?

There are suggestions the Milan derby could be played in the afternoon to prevent crowd trouble, but this weekend’s Sicilian derby will be open to all.

Under the new guidelines set out following the death of police officer Filippo Raciti, only one match per day can be played in the evening.

Although the Milan derby has rarely been considered a high-risk encounter, it is possible that on Sunday March 11 there will be no late kick-offs at all.

This would push even one of the biggest games in the calendar to a 15.00 local time, 14.00 in the UK, start.

"If that is the case, I don’t think it will make much of a difference," said Milan boss Carlo Ancelotti. "Although I must say that the evening gives a tie a certain aura."

Meanwhile, this Sunday’s Sicilian derby between Messina and Palermo will be welcome to fans from both clubs.

The Stadio San Filippo has passed all safety requirements and another inspection today confirmed there was no reason to limit the number of supporters.

Matters are slowly returning to normal elsewhere, as in Serie B Napoli have been given the go-ahead to let in their own season ticket holders for Saturday’s game against Spezia.

The Stadio San Paolo had been shut until now, but enough work has been done installing turnstiles to allow in the 19,500 locals.

Brescia’s Stadio Rigamonti lags behind, though, and failed another inspection today. The turnstiles are considered insufficient and not up to standard, while the CCTV system is also inadequate.

The Serie B encounter with Juventus on March 10 will have to be behind closed doors. But, as this is the biggest gate of the season for them, the club could decide to play on neutral turf in a stadium that is up to code.

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