Two Liverpool fans have been stabbed in Naples in an attack by a group of 10 youths armed with clubs and knives.

The fans were attacked early this morning, ahead of the Europa League clash between Liverpool and Napoli tonight.

In a separate attack a 28-year-old Italian was injured trying to protect some Liverpool fans, who were clients in his bar, from a gang of thugs.

Merseyside Police said a total of six Liverpool fans were assaulted in the Italian city on Wednesday night. None of the injuries is life-threatening but two fans were taken to hospital, one for a head injury and the other with a stab wound in his thigh.

A spokeswoman for the Foreign Office said: “We can confirm the hospitalisation of two British nationals in Naples, Italy on 20 October.”

“We are providing consular assistance.”

Police have opened an inquiry into the incidents and tensions are said to be high in Naples today.

A sell-out crowd of 60,000 people is expected for the Europa League game this evening.