Turkey prepares for Euro2004 clash

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> After all the speculation and rumour that came from England's training camp, thoughts are turning to Euro 2004 Group 7 qualifying game in Istanbul.

updated: February 25, 2007 09:48 IST
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After all the speculation and rumour that came from England's training camp on Wednesday, thoughts are now turning to Saturday's vital Euro 2004 Group 7 qualifying game in Istanbul, Turkey. With the history of violence that has occurred between these two sets of fans, Turkish authorities are taking no chances with their security plans. Turkey is getting ready for their biggest match since the 2002 World Cup semi-final defeat against Brazil. Istanbul plays host to Saturday's Euro 2004 Group 7 decider against England. Fenerbahce's Surku Saracoglu stadium will be used for the match amid fears that some English fans will travel to the game. This could cause a repeat of recent ugly events, when English fans have been killed in violent clashes in Turkey. The European Football Governing Body, UEFA, has made it clear in previous statements that any violence would lead to serious repercussions for both sides. Turkish authorities are to employ a triple police cordon around the ground. The police are going to check spectators' possessions and their identities. All these measures are to ensure that English supporters do not get into the stadium. England's coach Sven Goran Eriksson has also stressed to English fans not to travel and his employer, the Football Association has already declined their ticket allocation for the match. English fans can see the match live on domestic satellite television and a delayed broadcast on a free-to-air terrestrial channel. The local Turkish media have been full of yesterday's stories of unrest and a possible boycott from England's players leading up to Wednesday's agreement by the FA and their players to travel and fulfill their commitments. (AP)