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Thursday, February 23, 2012
North London rivals issue fan warning

Arsenal and Tottenham have issued a joint statement warning supporters that anti-social behaviour during Sunday's North London derby will not be tolerated.

The rivals meet at Emirates Stadium with the reception awaiting Tottenham's former Arsenal striker Emmanuel Adebayor the biggest concern.

Adebayor, who is expected to recover from a knee injury in time to play, was the target of abuse during the first meeting between the sides at White Hart Lane in October.

"Ahead of Sunday's game, both clubs are actively encouraging all fans to focus on getting behind their team and enjoying what promises to be a great match,'' read the statement.

"A north London derby is always a special occasion and we hope this game will be remembered for both the action on the pitch as well as the positive support for both teams off it.

"All fans should be aware that breaches of ground regulations - including anti-social behaviour - will not be tolerated.''

Adebayor's return from injury would add extra spice to one of the most volatile fixtures in the Premier League calendar.

Adebayor has endured a poor relationship with Arsenal since leaving to join Manchester City in 2009.

In his first game against the Gunners, the 27-year-old ran the full length of the pitch at Eastlands to celebrate in front of the travelling fans after having been verbally abused throughout the match.

The striker caused even greater fury when he raked his studs over the face of now Gunners skipper Robin van Persie during the same game.

Arsenal fans have never forgiven Adebayor for his conduct during that match in Manchester.

When the rivals met in October some chanted "It should have been you, it should have been you... shot in Angola. It should have been you'' in reference to the deadly gun attack on the Togo team bus in 2010 which Adebayor survived.

After the game, Arsenal and Spurs issued a joint statement strongly condemning the abusive chanting.




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