The Bernabeu Stadium looks to have been given the all-clear following a bomb threat that forced Sunday night's Primera Liga match between Real Madrid
and Real Sociedad to be abandoned.
The game was halted with around four minutes to go and the ground evacuated after Basque newspaper Gara announced they had received a phone call
saying that a bomb would go off at the stadium at 9pm local time. The evacuation of the stadium was completed in efficient fashion and, following a
search of the stadium grounds, the police now believe the area is secure.
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez confirmed: "Everything has now been inspected and the director general of the police is satisfied and has
closed the case."
The match was level at 1-1 when a Madrid official ran onto the pitch to pass on news of the bomb threat to match referee Vicente Lizondo Cortes.
Cortes then signalled to the players, who promptly left the pitch and ran down the tunnel.
The Spanish football authorities will meet on Monday at 11am to decide whether to play out the remainder of the match, but Real Sociedad coach Jose
Maria Amorrortu confirmed his team will be returning home this evening.
He said: "We're going back home to San Sebastian tonight. In the referee's report, the game is closed and we don't know if we will have to play the
Regarding the evacuation of the stadium, Amorrortu added: "It was all very quick and we really didn't know what was happening.
"We all went out of the dressing rooms and didn't have time to change. There wasn't time to think but then again it wasn't a normal situation to be
in. All you can say was that the evacuation looked to be organised."
Real Madrid's director of communications Antonio Garcia Ferreras revealed that they had received a phone call at around 8.40 local time warning them
of the bomb threat.
"We had about 15 minutes to evacuate the stadium and I think we got everyone out very quickly. Everyone has acted in a very calm and professional
manner. And I have to applaud both sets of fans for completing a very efficient evacuation," he said.
"We received the call at about 8.40, although I am not sure exactly when it arrived and we spoke to the security and the police and they took the
immediate decision to evacuate.
"These people are at the forefront of the battle against terrorism and it was best to take their advice and act immediately."
Perez was also full of praise for the supporters and the staff at the ground.
"I was in the director box when it happened, the head of police took the decision to evacuate," he said on television station Telemadrid.
"The evacuation (procedure) is very good in the Santiago Bernabeu, There were absolutely no problems. The truth is that everything worked well and
that's down to the fans who left normally as they would at the end of any other game.
"Obviously people were very nervous but everyone left the stadium in a calm fashion.
"We must thank everyone for leaving the stadium very quickly, I think it was completed in about five minutes."
Madrid had taken the lead in the match after 41 minutes through Brazilian striker Ronaldo but Sociedad equalised midway through the second half with a
goal from Kahveci Nihat.