Liverpool avoid Hillsborough anniversary clash
Friday 20 March 2009
Liverpool will not have to play a match on 15 April, the 20th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster, after Uefa scheduled their Champions League quarter-final second leg against Chelsea for 14 April.
Liverpool had asked Uefa to ensure they did not play on 15 April, when a memorial service will be held at Anfield in memory of the 96 fans who were crushed to death at a 1989 FA Cup semi-final against Nottingham Forest at Sheffield Wednesday's Hillsborough ground.
Having been paired with Chelsea, who they have met in the semi-finals in three of the past four seasons, Liverpool discovered that the Anfield first-leg would be on 8 April with the London return on April 14.
"We could fulfil our promise to Liverpool and that makes us happy and we hope Liverpool fans can find the right atmosphere for honouring their loved ones," Uefa director of communications William Gaillard told Sky Sports News.
Liverpool chief executive Rick Parry said the club were "delighted" with the outcome.
"We are very appreciative of the decision to play the second leg on 14 April," Parry told the club's web site.
"It was always clear from our discussions with Uefa that they understood the issue and the sensitivities involved around the anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster."
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