Liverpool condemns fan behavior in title celebrations

Liverpool soccer fans let off flares outside the Liver Building in Liverpool, England, Friday, June 26, 2020. Their team clinched the English Premier League title. Liverpool took the title after Manchester City failed to beat Chelsea on Wednesday evening. (Peter Byrne/PA via AP)

LIVERPOOL, England — English champion Liverpool has condemned the behavior of crowds of fans who gathered in the city to celebrate the club’s Premier League title win after a 30-year wait.

Merseyside Police issued a dispersal order for Liverpool city center on Friday night. This allowed police to disperse crowds who had gathered on the Pier Head, after part of the Liver Building caught fire amid the wild celebrations despite the coronavirus pandemic.

Videos circulating on social media showed a firework hitting the distinctive building, which is partly owned by Everton majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri.

A joint statement on behalf of the club, Liverpool City Council and Merseyside Police was issued on Saturday.

It said: “Several thousand people turned up at the Pier Head on Friday June 26 and some chose to ignore the social distancing guidance and risk public safety. Our city is still in a public health crisis and this behavior is wholly unacceptable.”

The statement added: “When it is safe to do so, we will all work together to arrange a victory parade when everyone can come together to celebrate.”

Four fire engines were sent to the Liver Building, where they extinguished a blaze on a balcony, a Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service spokeswoman said. The extent of the damage was not known.

The Liverpool Echo carried video that appeared to show glass bottles being thrown at police.

On Saturday the area was left littered with discarded bottles and rubbish and council street cleaners were on site.

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Pacquiao back in the gym, shows hand speed

FILE – Manny Pacquiao hits the heavy bag during training. Photo from MP Promotions

MANILA, Philippines — Manny Pacquiao had already said he will only fight when there’s a vaccine for COVID-19 and if it’s safe to do so.

But that doesn’t mean the eight-division champion won’t be in the gym training.

Pacquiao, the WBA (Super) welterweight champion, on Friday posted a short video of himself on social media lighting up the bag, reminding everyone about his hand speed.

The 41-year-old Pacquiao hasn’t fought since beating the much younger Keith Thurman last July, proving that he still has a lot left in the tank.

He’s been linked with the likes of WBO titleholder Terence Crawford and unified IBF and WBC champion Errol Spence Jr. for a potential fight, though nothing is expected to materialize any time soon with the coronavirus pandemic still at large in many parts of the world, particularly in the US.

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Garcia says his style would pose problems for Pacquiao like how Marquez did

Mikey Garcia celebrates after defeating Jessie Vargas in a unanimous decision in a WBC Welterweight Diamond Championship bout at The Ford Center at The Star on February 29, 2020 in Frisco, Texas. Tom Pennington/Getty Images/AFP

MANILA, Philippines — Mikey Garcia believes his style would cause Manny Pacquiao a lot of trouble if they end up meeting in the ring down the road.

Garcia, a four-division champion, sees himself fighting Pacquiao the same way Juan Manuel Marquez did in the past.

“I can fight really well. I feel that my boxing style can complicate things a lot for him similar to the way Marquez complicated things for Manny in all those fights,” Garcia told Fox Sports.

Widely considered as the Filipino legend’s greatest rival, Marquez went toe-to-toe with Pacquiao four times and a total of 42 rounds.

Marquez, an exceptional counterpuncher, settled for a split draw in the first encounter then lost by decision in the rematch and trilogy. But the retired Mexican warrior had the final say when he knocked out Pacquiao with just a second left in the sixth round of their fourth showdown in 2012.

Meanwhile, the 32-year-old Garcia has only lost once in 41 bouts after he got totally outclassed by undefeated welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr. last year.

Spence was too big and too good in the one-sided bout, but Garcia thinks that wouldn’t be the case against Pacquiao.

“He doesn’t have the height and reach advantage like Errol, so I think that makes it a better fight for me. I know he’s going to engage and I know he’s going to fight hard,” said Garcia, who is listed as the same height as Pacquiao at 5-foot-6.

“He’s a great fighter. He’s a living legend, and I would love to add that to my resume. Fighting

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