Merseyside Police confirmed on Tuesday night that two Italian men have been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder after a 53-year-old man from Ireland was left in critical condition following an altercation before Liverpool and Roma's Champions League semi-final. He has been named as Sean Cox, who lives in Dunboyne, Co Meath.
Police officers were called to the Albert pub ten minutes before kick-off following reports that a man had been seriously assaulted.
The two men, from Rome, aged 25 and 26, were subsequently arrested inside Anfield after officers carried out inquiries to find those involved.
The Irish Liverpool supporter, who suffered a head injury, was attended to at the scene by paramedics and was later taken to Walton Neurological Centre where he is said to be fighting for his life.
"We believe the victim was in Liverpool with his brother for the Liverpool v Roma semi-final and was assaulted during an altercation between Roma and Liverpool fans near to the Albert pub at about 7.35pm," said Detective Inspector Paul Speight.
"Witnesses report that the victim was hit with a belt and then fell to the ground."
He also appealed to anyone who has information regarding the incident to come forward and speak to police.
"The place where this incident occurred is right by the ground and was heaving with fans making their way to the game.
"I would appeal to anyone who has any information, or mobile phone footage of the incident to contact us urgently, as information they have could be vital to our investigation."
In a statement, Liverpool Football Club added that it is "shocked and appalled" by the incident.
"Our thoughts, in the first instance, are with the victim and his family at this very traumatic time. We will be offering them our full support."