Jurgen Klopp and Erik ten Hag ask fans to ‘keep the passion and lose the poison’ over tragedy chants

Recent fixtures between the teams have again seen a number of fans taunting with sickening chants regarding Heysel, Munich or Hillsborough

Richard Jolly
Senior Football Correspondent
Saturday 04 March 2023 10:16 GMT
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp details importance of Man United rivalry

Jurgen Klopp and Erik ten Hag have joined forces to call on Liverpool and Manchester United fans to stop “tragedy chanting” and offensive songs about the Munich, Heysel and Hillsborough disasters.

United have condemned their supporters for singing about Hillsborough, after 97 Liverpool fans lost their lives in and following the 1989 FA Cup semi-final, while United have faced taunts about the 1958 plane crash in Munich, where eight players were among the 23 people who died.

Managers Klopp and Ten Hag have called on both fanbases to create a special atmosphere when their clubs meet at Anfield on Sunday and said it is unacceptable to sing about the tragedies.

Klopp said: “One of the main reasons why the rivalry between Liverpool and Manchester United is so special is that it is so intense and no one should ever want to change this. But at the same time when the rivalry becomes too intense it can go to places that are not good for anyone and we do not need this.

‘We do want the noise, we do want the occasion to be partisan and we do want the atmosphere to be electric. What we do not want is anything that goes beyond this and this applies especially to the kind of chants that have no place in football. If we can keep the passion and lose the poison it will be so much better for everyone.”

Ten Hag added: “The rivalry between Manchester United and Liverpool is one of the greatest in world football. We all love the passion of the fans when our teams meet, but there are lines that should not be crossed.

‘It is unacceptable to use the loss of life — in relation to any tragedy — to score points, and it is time for it to stop. Those responsible tarnish not only the reputation of our clubs but also, importantly, the reputation of themselves, the fans, and our great cities.

‘On behalf of myself, our players, and our staff, we ask our fans to focus on supporting the team on Sunday, and representing our club in the right way.”

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