Montrose FC anger as derby day security fears are founded

Arbroath v Montrose / SFL Div 3 / Gayfield / April 23 2011'Fans invade the pitch at the final whistle
Arbroath v Montrose / SFL Div 3 / Gayfield / April 23 2011'Fans invade the pitch at the final whistle

MONTROSE Football Club has called for a reaction from both Tayside Police and Arbroath Football Club after they claimed security arrangements failed during Saturday’s derby fixture at Gayfield.

Following Arbroath’s title-clinching victory a huge number of home fans spilled onto the pitch to celebrate with their team.

During the rush Gable Endies’ goalkeeper Ramiro Gonzalez appeared to be pushed to the ground by some of the home supporters - one of whom was stripped only to his underwear.

Montrose chairman Derek Sim said that the visiting club were unhappy with the crowd security arrangements before the match started, but a plea for changes to be made had been turned down.

Mr Sim said: “Montrose Football Club wish to express their concern at the segregation arrangements made for Saturday’s game where our fans were herded in a corner of the ground which included a small portion of the main stand. Those not seated in the stand then had to contend with very inclement weather during most of the game.

“We expressed our concerns on a number of occasions prior to the game regarding these arrangements, however Arbroath FC and the security team including police refused to make changes whereby Montrose fans could be positioned behind the Pleasureland goal as in previous games.

“Our concerns regarding the safety and security arrangements were realised when Montrose goalkeeper Ramiro Gonzalez was pushed to the ground by two Arbroath fans.

“This was an extremely upsetting incident which left Ramiro extremely concerned and angry.

“We are grateful to the Police for rescuing Ramiro, however, Montrose FC understand that a film of the incident is available on the internet and request Arbroath FC and Tayside Police take all the necessary arrangements to apprehend those responsible and take appropriate action.”

After the incident Gonzalez said: “I don’t know why they had to do that, I couldn’t understand it.”

Mr Sim added that Montrose manager Ray Farningham’s car had been damaged while parked outside the ground. He said: “Ray’s car was kicked and the door was badly dented.”

A police spokesman said: “We can confirm that at the conclusion of the Arbroath v Montrose match some supporters ran onto the pitch and the Montrose goalkeeper was knocked over. Inquiries are continuing into this incident.”