Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp has urged supporters of the Premier League champions not to spoil the work done in containing the coronavirus outbreak by gathering in large numbers to celebrate their title victory.
Liverpool's 30-year wait for their 19th English top-flight crown ended on Thursday when Manchester City lost at Chelsea and thousands of fans turned up at Anfield to celebrate.
Liverpool, Merseyside police and the city council issued a joint statement condemning the "wholly unacceptable" behaviour after crowds gathered for a second night on Friday, sparking fears of a surge in COVID-19 cases.
On Thursday evening local time Liverpool play away at 2018/19 champions Manchester City in their first game since the title was confirmed.
"Please ... celebrate in a safe way and in private settings, whereby we do not risk spreading this awful disease further," Klopp wrote in a letter to fans in the local Liverpool Echo newspaper.
"If things were different I would love nothing more than to celebrate together, to have a parade that would be even bigger than the one after we won the Champions League last year ... but it just is not possible.
"We have all done so much to fight COVID-19 and this effort cannot go to waste.
"I love your passion, your songs, your refusal to accept defeat, your commitment, your understanding of the game and your faith in what we are doing.
"(But) we owe it to the most vulnerable in our community ... not to do this."
Australian Associated Press