Chelsea have risked the wrath of rivals Liverpool by giving the Merseysiders a reduced ticket allocation for their visit to Stamford Bridge in the FA Cup.
Jurgen Klopp will take his runaway Premier League leaders down to the capital on Tuesday, 3 March, in the fifth round of the cup - the first time a whole round of the competition will be played out in midweek.
It is yet to be seen whether the Klopp will deploy his strongest lineup or the Under-23 side, as he did against Shrewsbury in the last round. However, whatever team they field, the Reds will not have as many supporters in attendance as they would have hoped.
Chelsea have taken the decision to reduce the usual away ticket allocation for the cup tie for health and safety reasons - about 800 fewer than normal have been made available, leaving the total number at 5,466. Away ticket allocation is normally set at 15% for FA Cup ties.
"The club have been informed that the decision to have a reduced allocation is made by Chelsea’s Safety Advisory Group and based on a number of factors. Chelsea said that the decision is final and will not change."
Fans without a ticket were also urged not to travel down to London or to the stadium, while Chelsea are yet to publicly respond to the 'challenge'.
For the first time ever, the last 16 of the competition will be played out in midweek evening kick-offs, between Monday 2 and Thursday 5 March.
The FA's unorthodox scheduling has thrown up a ticketing issue however, with far more stringent safety rules for evening fixtures.
Following this FA Cup encounter, Liverpool host Bournemouth in the early kick-off on the Saturday before Chelsea welcome the blue half of Merseyside at 2pm on the Sunday.
Source : 90min