And with next Saturay's third qualifying round clash expected to attract a bumper crowd, officials at The Marine Travel Arena have confirmed that the tie will be segregated to assist with the distribution of fans around the ground and the provision of facilities for both sets of supporters following discussions with representatives of the National League North club, Merseyside Police and Sefton Council.
The Mariners set up the meeting with the 2014-15 Northern Premier League champions with wins over Whitby Town and Atherton Collieries and Marine chairman Paul Leary is looking forward to renewing their friendship with the Rebels after the arrangements were confirmed on Friday.
Leary, pictured, said: “The draw brings to Marine our friends from FC United, now in the National League North. It is over three years since we last played them in a league game at College Road and I look forward to rekindling friendships again in this important cup tie for both clubs and their supporters.
“This will be our highest attendance so far this season at the Marine Travel Arena with an attendance likely to exceed the near 800 that attended the recent City of Liverpool FC game last month. Every effort will be made to provide a safe and enjoyable environment for all supporters visiting the stadium and full consultation is taking place with representatives of Merseyside Police, Sefton Council and FC United to help make this happen.
“Additional stewarding and policing will be provided to ensure, as far as possible, that the game will be completed with all fans having a trouble free and enjoyable day. The additional resources brought in for this game are experienced in dealing with such high profile games and I thank them for agreeing to help Marine Football Club on this occasion.”
He added: “I am looking forward to a cracker of a cup tie with both clubs looking to progress further. I expect this to be a tight affair but played in the right spirit and in a fan friendly atmosphere. I am really pleased that the FA Trophy draw has given both clubs the opportunity to meet up again and I welcome therefore the supporters, staff, players and officials of FC Utd of Manchester to the Marine Travel Arena for our first meeting in over three years.”
Admission to the ground is priced at £10 for adults and £5 for concessions with visiting fans using the College Road turnstiles and the Mariners those via the car park to the front of the stadium. Both sets of fans are advised to arrive early to reduce delays at the turnstiles which open at 1.30pm. The facilities in the Arriva Suite will be open for FC United supporters and those in the Graham Lounge for the Mariners. Further information is available at www.marinefc.com.
Images courtesy of Susan Nugent/@MarineAFC/Twitter
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