Two men arrested after Hartlepool United v Portsmouth match – and police chief voices ‘disappointment’

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TWO men have been arrested after Saturday’s Hartlepool United match – and a police chief has voiced his “disappointment”.

The two men, aged 19 and 54-years-old, were said to be involved in an alleged incident in Church Street, Hartlepool, following the Pools v Portsmouth clash at Victoria Park.

The pair were arrested shortly before 6pm on suspicion of affray and were taken to Hartlepool Police Station, in Avenue Road, for questioning and were still being held in custody on Saturday night.

The arrests followed a busy day for police after dozens of officers were drafted onto the streets of Hartlepool for a North East English Defence League (EDL) protest against the use of the Muslim burka in Britain, and a counter demonstration by the Hartlepool Against Racism group.

And earlier today Cleveland Police’s Chief Superintendent Ciaran Irvine said he was pleased that the event, which saw 150 EDL supporters march through the centre of town, led to no arrests or trouble caused.

But tonight the top cop said he was disappointed with the two arrests, which had nothing to do with the protests, after “what had otherwise been a successful day.”

He said: “I’d like to make it clear that the two arrests are in no way linked to the earlier demonstrations that took place in Hartlepool, which passed off without incident or any arrests.

“It’s disappointing that we’ve ended up with people in custody on what has otherwise been a successful day.”