Time­line: How the drama un­folded in Manchester

The Daily Telegraph - Total Football - - BARCLAYS PREMIER LEAGUE -

2.43pm

Manchester United’s play­ers start be­ing ush­ered off the field by Frans Hoek, the goal­keep­ing coach, shortly af­ter stew­ards be­gin evac­u­at­ing fans from the north stand and Stret­ford End.

2.44pm

A mes­sage over the PA sys­tem tells se­cu­rity staff to ini­ti­ate “op­er­a­tion code red”. Talks be­tween of­fi­cials con­tinue. Fans in the south and east stands are asked to re­main in their seats.

3.06pm

An an­nounce­ment is made to fans out­side the ground that the game has been aban­doned.

3.19pm

United an­nounce over the PA sys­tem to fans inside the ground that the game has been called off be­cause of the dis­cov­ery of a sus­pect pack­age in the north west quad­rant.

4.03pm

The army bomb dis­posal unit arrive on the scene to as­sist Greater Manchester Police. The play­ers by now have been moved from the dress­ing rooms to a suite in the sta­dium.

4.41pm

A “con­trolled ex­plo­sion” of what is later de­scribed as an “in­cred­i­bly life­like ex­plo­sive de­vice” is car­ried out by the bomb squad as a full search of the sta­dium con­tin­ues.

4.45pm

Stew­ards are in­structed to re­turn inside the sta­dium only to be in­formed min­utes later over the PA sys­tem that they must hold their po­si­tions out­side. United play­ers de­part later.

5.30pm

Louis van Gaal leaves in his car while the Bournemouth team coach de­parts for Manchester air­port. Hun­dreds of stew­ards and club staff re­main out­side the ground.

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