TROUBLE flared between fans of Hereford and Stockport County football clubs yesterday.

Smoke bombs were set off on the pitch at Edgar Street and in the streets.

There were reports of missiles being thrown, and police were at the Oxford Arms in Widemarsh Street and the Kings Fee (Weatherspoons) in Commercial Road to keep order.

There were also scuffles at the Merton Meadows car park before and after the match, which ended in a 2-2 draw.

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Supporters of both sides had their say about what happened.

Stockport fan Gill Brain questioned police tactics.

She said: "We travelled up from Gloucester and were parked round the back, but we were shepherded round to the coaches and straight into the trouble.

"They [the police] should have been stopping us heading there, not feeding us to the lions!"

She added: "I'm not saying our fans were impeccably behaved, there is a pocket of them who provoke trouble and spoil it for the rest."

Hereford fan Robin Dunford said: "The majority of the Stockport supporters were well behaved, but the minority let them down, as did some of the home supporters.

"It was a great game, but marred by a few idiots.

Superintendent Mel Paley of West Mercia Police said: "In order to maintain levels of service to Herefordshire communities, West Mercia Police will act on intelligence received when planning and policing an event such as this. West Mercia Police will always prioritise the public, their safety and the safety of staff.

"Responsibility for disorder such as we saw yesterday always lies with those who make the decision to be violent and put innocent people at risk and we will act accordingly, and as such four arrests were made.

"I would like to reassure the local community and the vast majority of peaceful football fans from both Stockport County and Hereford FC who were caught up in the disturbance that we always review our operational procedures to take away any lessons to be learned and this case will be no different.

"I would like to thank fans from both teams who travelled to the game yesterday for their patience and understanding whilst we dealt with the unusual circumstances where a number of individuals were intent on disrupting what should be a safe and fun family day out."