Manchester United vs. Liverpool delayed amid fan protests

The match was set to kick off Sunday at 11:30 ET / 16:30 BST.

The Premier League encounter between Manchester United and Liverpool scheduled for Sunday has been postponed after several dozen people made their way onto the Old Trafford pitch hours prior to the original kick-off time.

Amid a fan protest outside United's stadium, an estimated 200 people were able to break into the ground and make their way onto the playing surface. Some fans were carrying flares and smoke bombs, with one individual able to take a corner flag from inside the stadium and back out into the larger group outside.

The protest caused both United and Liverpool to delay their arrival at the stadium, with both teams' players still at their respective hotels 90 minutes prior to the original kick-off time after following the advice of local police.

At 3:40 p.m. BST the Premier League confirmed the match would still go on, as reported by The Guardian, but no kick-off time was announced. Just over two hours later, the league officially postponed the contest until a later date.

"Following the security breach at Old Trafford, the Manchester United vs. Liverpool game has been postponed," a statement on PremierLeague.com read. "This is a collective decision from the police, both clubs, the Premier League and local authorities.

"The security and safety of everyone at Old Trafford remains of paramount importance.  We understand and respect the strength of feeling but condemn all acts of violence, criminal damage and trespass, especially given the associated COVID-19 breaches.  Fans have many channels by which to make their views known, but the actions of a minority seen today have no justification.

"We sympathise with the police and stewards who had to deal with a dangerous situation that should have no place in football.

"The rearrangement of the fixture will be communicated in due course."

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