The biggest game in a generation at Chorley FC will be an all-ticket affair.
Officials at Victory Park are expecting a crowd in excess of 3,000 for their top-of-the-table clash against Chester on February 19.
The sides are currently in the top two spots in the First Division North, and with only one automatic promotion place up for grabs, the game may be crucial to the league’s outcome.
Chorley have been working closely with Chorley Police to ensure that plans are in place to deal with an unprecedented 1,100 away fans who are expected to travel to the game.
Entrance on the day will be restricted to ticket only – there will be no opportunity to pay on the gate.
Insp Steve Evans said: “This is a big game for both Chorley and Chester.
“And the fact that 1,000 away fans will travel to the town is certainly something different.
“The game will be ticketed, and we are asking that anyone without a ticket doesn’t travel as they won’t be able to get in.
“Fans have more than two weeks to get their tickets, and we are doing all we can to make sure the game’s remembered for the right reasons.
“We really want it to be a good day for everyone, and we aren’t anticipating any problems.”
The Chester fans will be housed in the Pilling Lane end, and will not be permitted to use the social club that will be open for home fans only.
Extra stewards are also being drafted in to manage the large crowds.
Insp Evans said: “The fact that Chorley are doing so well in the league is a great thing for the whole town, and there is a lot of support for them.
“Chester were a league side until recently, and have a big following.
“It is great that Victory Park will be full. The Chester fans will be given a warm welcome in Chorley, and the plans we are putting in place are appropriate to the large numbers we are expecting.”
Officers will also be liasing with licensees in the town to make them aware of the anticipated influx of football fans, but Insp Evans warned that anyone who drinks excessively will be banned from the game.
He added: “The town isn’t used to having such big crowds, so we will be talking to the licensees just to make them aware of what is happening.”
Magpies chairman Ken Wright said he expected the crowd to swell up to 3,000 – the largest since the late 1980s.
He added: “We need to make sure that the event goes off well.
“We have been in contact with the police and agreed the things that need to be put in place to enable this.”
Wright said that Chester had been offered 1,100 tickets for the day, and more could be made available if there was further demand.
He added: “Confirmation of when the tickets will be on sale, and where, will be advertised on the Chorley FC website as soon as we have the information.”