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Thursday, May 20, 2010

QPR Fans a Threat to Cardiff?


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- Flashback Seven Years: Fire Alarms at Cardiff

Daily Mail/Neil Moxley - Dave Jones bolsters hotel security as Cardiff fear reprisals from QPR fans
- Cardiff City boss Dave Jones has beefed up hotel security ahead of tomorrow’s play-off final against Blackpool at Wembley.
- Jones, who will lead his side out in a match worth £88million (promotion earns the winners £40m and four years of parachute payments comprise £48m), has increased protection around the team’s base in the capital after QPR fans threatened reprisals.
- Seven years ago, QPR were woken ahead of their League One play-off date with Cardiff when the matches were staged at the Millennium Stadium.
- The fire alarm was set off in the middle of the night and, now that Cardiff head to London to face Blackpool, rumours have grown that Rangers’ fans will serve up a revenge attack.
- Jones said: ‘We do have security this year. We have taken as much precaution as we can do.’ Mail

TELEGRAPH/Jeremy Wilson and Rory Smith
Cardiff City v Blackpool: Dave Jones fears QPR fans' revenge ahead of Wembley clash
The location of the Cardiff City team hotel is being kept secret ahead of Saturday’s Championship play-off final following threats from Queens Park Rangers supporters that they will set off the fire alarm.

- The bizarre plan would be an act of revenge for the Division Two play-off final in 2003 when the QPR players were woken at 3am before a match they lost 1-0 against Cardiff at the Millennium Stadium. A Cardiff City fan was later prosecuted for criminal damage and making a false and malicious fire call.
- Cardiff’s opponents on Saturday at Wembley are Blackpool, rather than QPR, but the threat — which has been circulating on internet message boards – is being taken seriously.
- “The hotel we are staying at has their own security, we have looked into all that,” said Dave Jones, the Cardiff manager. “We have tried to keep it under wraps but eventually they will probably find out where we are staying. If it goes off, it goes off; but I think there is enough security there.”
- Victory would make Cardiff the first non-English club to win promotion to the Premier League.
- “It’s life-changing, not just for the football club, but everyone in the city,” said Jones...."Telegraph

Guardian/Stuart James -
Cardiff City tighten hotel security amid fears of QPR fans' revenge• Cardiff fear plan to disrupt play-off preparations
• QPR woken by 3am fire alarms in Cardiff in 2003

Cardiff City are confident there will be sufficient security in place at their team hotel in London to prevent Queens Park Rangers supporters from disrupting their preparations for tomorrow's Championship play-off final against Blackpool at Wembley by setting off a fire alarm to gain revenge for a similar incident in South Wales seven years ago.

QPR fans have used message boards and forums to discuss staging a repeat of the disturbance that led to their club's players being forced to leave their hotel rooms when the fire alarm went off just before 3am on the day of their Division Two play-off final against Cardiff at the Millennium Stadium in 2003.

Neil MacNamara, a Cardiff City supporter and former security guard at the club, later pleaded guilty to causing criminal damage and giving a false alarm of fire at the Celtic Manor hotel in Newport, where he booked in to stay the night before the match. MacNamara was banned from attending football matches for five years after magistrates decided his actions were intended to disrupt QPR's preparations for the game, which Cardiff won 1-0 after extra-time to gain promotion to what is now the Championship.

Dave Jones, the Cardiff manager, said yesterday he was aware of the rumours that QPR fans were plotting to cause chaos at the team's hotel in London tonight but he believes there are plans in place to minimise the risk of any revenge attack. "I wasn't even here [when the incident happened with QPR]," said Jones, who was Wolverhampton Wanderers' manager at the time. "I am getting blamed for something else. I don't know why they are setting my alarms off because I wasn't here when it happened.

"But we have security. Would you want to mess around with Don behind you?" continued the Cardiff manager, pointing to one of the club's security staff, who will be on duty at the team's hotel this evening. "The hotel we are going to have their own security anyway.

"We have looked into all that. If [the fire alarm] goes off, it goes off. We have taken as much precaution as we would do regardless of whether they said they were going to do it or not. Eventually they will find out where we are staying.

"We have tried to keep it under wraps, as we always do, but if they find out, they find out. I think there is enough security there, though." Guardian

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