Ipswich: Fan’s fury over missing Carling Cup clash between Ipswich Town and Arsenal after being arrested for drinking inside Emirates stadium

IPSWICH: A disgruntled Super Blues fan today hit out at “over-zealous” treatment after being arrested for drinking inside Arsenal’s Emirates stadium.

Liam McErleane, 26, was forced to miss the whole of Tuesday night’s Carling Cup semi final second-leg after being spotted by stewards holding a plastic pint glass as he made his way to his seat just before kick-off.

Mr McErleane, of Jovian Way, was eventually taken to a cell at Islington police station where he was held for two hours before being released with a caution.

He said: “I got a pint of beer in a plastic glass and made my way to my seat. The teams were coming out on the pitch and I was really looking forward to the game.

“A female steward grabbed my arm and told me I couldn’t drink in the stands. I accepted this and said I would go back into the bar area to finish it.

“Instead she led me to a room inside the ground full of police officers. I was searched and asked if I was doing any drugs.

“I was then taken to Islington police station and put in a cell for two hours. I couldn’t believe what was happening – I had cooperated fully and hadn’t been abusive.”

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Mr McErleane, who attends several Ipswich home and away games each season, insisted that he wasn’t causing any trouble inside the ground.

He added: “I could understand being arrested if I was kicking off or shouting abuse but this was ridiculous and completely over-zealous.

“I wasn’t drunk, I just hadn’t realised you couldn’t drink within the stands.

“I had been looking forward to the game for weeks but it turned out to be an evening to forget.”

A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police confirmed that a 26-year-old man had been arrested at the game for drinking in the viewing area of a sporting arena but was later released with a caution.

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