POLICE arrested THREE fans before Liverpool's thrilling 2-2 draw with Manchester City on suspicion of possessing flares.
Mersyside Police have confirmed three men were taken into custody after a flare was thrown outside Anfield before the clash.
The police have been praised for their quick intervention, helping prevent any 'serious injuries and damage'.
A Merseyside Police statement read: "We can confirm that three men have been arrested on suspicion of possessing flares in Anfield before the game between Liverpool FC and Manchester City FC today, Sunday 3 October.
"At around 3.05pm, three men were identified by officers as having possession of flares in the Anfield Road area, one of which was thrown, causing no damage or injury.
"All were detained and have been arrested and taken into custody.
"A 38-year-old man from Liverpool City Centre was arrested on suspicion of an offence under the Fireworks Act after a flare was reportedly thrown in the road.
"A 35-year-old man from Belfast, Northern Ireland was arrested on suspicion of an offence under the Fireworks Act after a lit flare was reportedly discarded on the ground; and possession of cannabis found when he was searched.
"A 19-year-old man of no fixed abode was also arrested on suspicion of possession of a flare at a sporting event, which was unlit."
Assistant chief constable Rob Carden added: "A swift response from our officers on the ground resulted in three arrests and the confiscation of flares which could have caused serious injuries and damage.
"We have worked closely with both clubs in an extensive policing plan for this fixture, and it’s great to see the vast majority of supporters enjoying the day.
"Those people involved in such behaviour aren’t genuine supporters, but the impact of their actions is damaging to those who attend every game to watch their team play.
"That they were quickly identified and detained is credit to the diligence of those officers present."
In the game, Man City twice fought from a goal down to snatch a late 2-2 draw at Liverpool.
The Reds are also investigating claims by Man City that a fan spat on one of Pep Guardiola's assistants.
City demanded action from Liverpool's security staff following the alleged incident, shortly after Phil Foden made it 1-1.
Despite the visitors complaining instantly, stewards insisted they could not eject the supporter as they did not see the incident.
Liverpool will now study CCTV footage to try to identify the fan but City have not involved the police yet.
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