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Liverpool spared match on Hillsborough's 20th anniversary

Latest update : 2009-03-20

UEFA accepted Liverpool's request not to play the Champions League quarter-final on the 20th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster. On March 15 1989, 96 Liverpool fans died crushed into security barriers during at FA Cup semi-final.

REUTERS - Liverpool will not have to play a match on April 15, the 20th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster, after UEFA on Friday scheduled their Champions League quarter-final second leg against Chelsea for April 14.

Liverpool had asked UEFA to ensure they did not play on April 15, when a memorial service will be held at Anfield in memory of the 96 fans who were crushed to death at a 1989 FA Cup semi-final against Nottingham Forest at Sheffield Wednesday's Hillsborough ground.

Having been paired with Chelsea, who they have met in the semi-finals in three of the past four seasons, Liverpool discovered that the Anfield first leg would be on April 8 with the London return on April 14.

"We could fulfil our promise to Liverpool and that makes us happy and we hope Liverpool fans can find the right atmosphere for honouring their loved ones," UEFA director of communications William Gaillard told Sky Sports News.

Liverpool chief executive Rick Parry said the club were "delighted" with the outcome.

"We are very appreciative of the decision to play the second leg on April 14," Parry told the club's web site.

"It was always clear from our discussions with UEFA that they understood the issue and the sensitivities involved around the anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster."

Date created : 2009-03-20