Gardai launch massive security operation ahead of England game

There will be 400 Gardai on the streets of the capital this weekend
There will be 400 Gardai on the streets of the capital this weekend

Gardai launched a massive security operation on the streets of Dublin yesterday in preparation for the arrival of an influx of England fans. report that 400 Gardai are being used in the operation, which began yesterday afternoon with extra patrols and two public order units on the streets.

However the public order units, while visible, are not being sent out in riot gear, Instead they are being deployed 'soft hatted'.

Gardai sources say that they have no intelligence regarding trouble on the horizon and the policing will be low key but prepared for all eventualities.

The number of public order units will be doubled today as England fans start to arrive in the city, with an extra focus on Temple Bar, where they expect visiting fans to congregate.

Tomorrow, ahead of the 1pm kickoff at Aviva Stadium, the route from the city centre to the ground will have police patrols while 'spotters' from the UK police will be on hand to keep an eye out for known trouble makers and assist Gardai.

Gardai from all over the city will be involved this weekend, and two chief superintendents will be in charge of the operation, one based in the stadium, the other in special 'command centre'.

The source told "We are not anticipating major trouble. An awful lot has changed since the last game in 1995 and the country will welcome the English fans and hope for a good game.

"We intend to be low-key and adopt a tolerant attitude. But if there are problems, we will be ready."

While 3,000 tickets have been sold to English fans via clubs it is estimated that 2,000 more will also turn up for the game, either looking for tickets on the day or having secured them elsewhere.