A HEAVY police prescence kept rival fans apart as they made their way to St James' Park for the Tyne-Wear derby.

Newcastle and Sunderland kicked off in the Premier League at 12.45pm.

The fixture has the potential for trouble and after violence broke out last season, police were taking no chances.  

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Our reporter Gavin Havery is outside the ground and reported: "There is no sign of trouble. There's plenty of singing and rowdiness, but no violence, though there are stacks of police."