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After Manchester Arena bombing, UEFA says ‘no specific intelligence’ of risk to Europa final

Police walk through a tunnel inside the Friends

Police walk through a tunnel inside the Friends Arena stadium in Stockholm, Sweden on May 23, 2017. Photo Credit: EPA / Peter Powell

STOCKHOLM — After a deadly bombing at a concert in Manchester, UEFA said Tuesday it has “no specific intelligence” that the Europa League final featuring Manchester United will be a target.

Man United plays Ajax on Wednesday in Stockholm, and security was already intensified following a deadly truck attack in the Swedish capital last month.

“The terrorist risk had been taken into account since the very beginning of the project,” UEFA said, noting it has worked with Swedish authorities “for many months” to plan for the game.

“There is currently no specific intelligence which might suggest that any of the UEFA Europa League Final activities in Stockholm may be the target of attacks,” UEFA said in a statement.

At least 22 people were killed when an apparent suicide bomber attacked an Ariana Grande concert as the performance ended on Monday in Manchester.

Man United players observed a minute’s silence for the victims at a Tuesday morning training session before flying to Sweden.

United coach Jose Mourinho’s scheduled news conference later in the day at the Friends Arena in Stockholm was canceled at the club’s request, UEFA said.

Stockholm police spokesman Kjell Lindgren said there has been no threat to Wednesday’s match.

“Now, we are prepared for every possible and thinkable (thing) that could happen in Stockholm tomorrow, including terrorist attacks, and we are satisfied with our preparations,” Lindgren said.

“We have been in contact with our English as well as Dutch colleagues and they are helping us with information, they are visiting us tomorrow, and we are quite satisfied with how we are prepared and the information that we get.”

Ajax joined many in the soccer world expressing support for the victims.

“From Amsterdam with love to Manchester,” the Dutch team posted on its official Twitter account. “Our thoughts are with the victims and the loved ones of those affected.”

Fnierop Ferdi, an Ajax fan in Stockholm, said he wasn’t concerned about another attack affecting Wednesday’s match.

“We don’t think about it,” Ferdi said. “Let only idiots do what they want. We will always win, sport.”

Former United greats used social media to show support for the city of Manchester.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s Twitter account had a post of a British flag with “MANCHESTER” written across the red central stripe.

David Beckham wrote on Facebook: “As a father & a human what has happened truly saddens me.”

The club said its “staff are ready to help the police and other emergency services in any way that may be required at this challenging time for our city.”

Old Trafford, including a club store and museum, was closed on Tuesday.

Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany wrote on Twitter: “I would like to express my deepest condolences to the families of the victims. It’s a sad day for the great city of Manchester. #Unity.”

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