Uefa threatens final switch

2009 final could be moved from Stadio Olimpico

Uefa has warned that the 2009 UEFA Champions League final could be moved from Stadio Olimpico if there is trouble in Roma's match against Manchester United on Tuesday.

When the sides met last season ten United fans were stabbed in the Italian capital, while there was further violence when Real Madrid visited last month.

Previously, three Middlesbrough fans were stabbed in 2006 and there have been numerous incidents involving knife-wielding gangs outside the stadium before domestic matches.

Roma are set to stage next season's showpiece but Uefa communications director William Gaillard has told fans to expect consequences if they do not behave.

"The situation inside the stadium has improved dramatically and we hope it will go well tomorrow and there are no reasons to expect problems inside the stadium," said Gaillard.

Watching closely

"But we cannot afford to organise the final of the Champions League in a city where people are getting knifed every game.

"We will be watching and we are serious that if we have incidents like when Manchester United visited last year or Real Madrid last month, then we would have to reconsider our decision for the 2009 final."

He added: "We cannot have responsibility for bringing 40,000 people to the final and risk them being knifed in the city.

"We will be watching closely tomorrow and the rest of the season and next season. The police have to do their job.

"It's a fantastic venue and a beautiful city, and we realise these people have nothing to do with football, but if fans are afraid and it's dangerous we will have to look at the whole matter."