May 15, 2021

Man Utd

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Peter Schmeichel brands Manchester United protesters inside Old Trafford ‘idiots and troublemakers’

4 min read

Former Manchester United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel has labelled the protesters that broke into Old Trafford on Sunday as ‘idiots and troublemakers’.

A number of angry supporters managed to get inside United’s famous ground as part of the wider calls for the much-maligned owners of the club, the Glazers, to step away in the wake of the European Super League fiasco.

Their disgust with years of mismanagement culminated in tensions rising at the weekend – and images quickly emerged of people standing up against the hierarchy on the pitch. Equipment was broken and two police officers were injured.

Hundreds of supporters broke into Old Trafford on Sunday to protest against the Glazer family

Hundreds of supporters broke into Old Trafford on Sunday to protest against the Glazer family

Peter Schmeichel has labelled the protesters 'idiots' and believes they were not 'die-hard' fans

Peter Schmeichel has labelled the protesters ‘idiots’ and believes they were not ‘die-hard’ fans

Now, in the wake of the incident, Schmeichel, an ambassador for United, has opted to criticise hundreds of protestors by insisting that those who stormed the stadium were not loyal members of the fanbase.

He told CBS Sports: ‘I don’t think the die-hard fans were the ones inside the stadium. I think they are idiots, troublemakers. None of them will remember the good times. Some of them weren’t even born when the Glazers took over the club.

‘The die-hard fans, the true fans, keep voicing your opinions, but keep it at a proper level. Don’t be stupid about it. Don’t demand something which is unrealistic. Keep up the pressure, keep up the ideas.

Avram (left) and Joel (right) Glazer are under fresh calls to leave after a series of poor decisions

Avram (left) and Joel (right) Glazer are under fresh calls to leave after a series of poor decisions

‘What we’ve learned from the last two weeks is, if we stand together and we show our opposition to ideas that we don’t agree with, as a massive group, it does have an effect. I think football, not Manchester United, is at a crossroads now.

‘There is this incredible opportunity now to change direction. Something that I think it has needed for a long, long, long time.’

The pitch invasion took place just a matter of hours before United were due to host Liverpool. As a result, the Premier League fixture was postponed with concerns over security and fears that the coronavirus bubble was breached.

It is currently unclear when the match will now take place with both teams facing packed schedules until the end of the season. Sky Sports have confirmed, however, that the game will go ahead at a later date. 

A furious United supporter is pictured holding a corner flag aloft during Sunday's mass protest

A furious United supporter is pictured holding a corner flag aloft during Sunday’s mass protest

The scenes in and around Old Trafford saw United's fixture against rivals Liverpool postponed

The scenes in and around Old Trafford saw United’s fixture against rivals Liverpool postponed

The ugly scenes began with the mass protest against the Glazer family in full swing. The gathering was largely advertised across social media several days before as calls for change at the very top of the club continue to increase. 

But despite the vocal opposition to the United ownership, Schmeichel believes that a new buyer will not be found easily due to the sheer costs required – and has urged fans to work with the Glazers instead.

‘The club will be, I don’t know, three, four, five billion dollars? Who’s got that kind of money to buy the football club?’ Schmeichel added.

‘If you look at potential buyers, are they going to make it much better? Is it going to be different. There are examples, but they never bought in at that price tag.

Many flares of green and yellow smoke, the colours used in anti-Glazer protests, were set off

Many flares of green and yellow smoke, the colours used in anti-Glazer protests, were set off

United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is pictured with the Glazers at the Nou Camp in April 2019

United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is pictured with the Glazers at the Nou Camp in April 2019

‘I would much rather that we work with the Glazers, because I think there is a willingness within the family. Work with the Glazers to make this football club what this football club is supposed to be.

‘I think everyone feels that the Glazer family is a little bit too detached from the club. They are there now and again, but they are not there every week. You never see Joel Glazer come out in front of the cameras and talk about the club, and I think that frustrates the fans a lot.

‘We have this ownership, but from the outside, it looks like the owners don’t care, that it is just about money. I don’t think that’s completely the case. I think they are very proud of their ownership of Manchester United. I just think there is a need now for a restructuring of how it’s being operated.’

It has since emerged, meanwhile, that United may be facing a points deduction after they failed to fulfil their encounter with Liverpool. Both the Premier League and Football Association are investigating the matter.

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