Leeds claim open-top bus celebrations were to help fans stay AWAY from Elland Road after ploy totally backfires

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LEEDS bizarrely claim their open top bus celebration last night was supposed to keep fans AWAY from Elland Road.

Instead thousands of supporters flocked to the stadium to celebrate their side’s Championship title as Marcelo Bielsa and his players partied outside the ground.

Club officials had previously urged fans to stay away because of coronavirus concerns ahead of their 4-0 thrashing of Charlton yesterday.

Chief executive Angus Kinnear had said: “We must consider the health of people in our community before we celebrate.”

But before kick-off, pictures emerged online showing the open top bus parked behind the centenary pavillion.

It was used at the end of the game as the playing squad and management staff climbed aboard with some addressing the masses through the PA system.

Four people were arrested at Elland Road as missiles were thrown and one police officer got a minor injury.

Liverpool also lifted the Premier League trophy last night but did not celebrate outside Anfield – instead promising supporters a party at a later date.

And after widespread condemnation, Leeds have tried to explain away the decision which clearly backfired.

A club spokesman told Leeds Live: “Following consultation with the Supporter Advisory Group and [Leeds City] Council, Leeds United arranged for a bus to be parked outside the East Stand reception as a contingency to assist dispersal should a crowd congregate at Elland Road despite a month-long campaign from the club and supporter groups to encourage supporters to stay at home.

“The safety group believed was that a brief appearance from the players with the Championship trophy, would help to signal an end to proceedings, encouraging fans to head home safely.”

Jubilant fans were on the streets for hours celebrating their Premier League return after 16 years.

And Leeds Wags celebrated the promotion with a rooftop party.

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