England hooligans and French police clash again

England football hooligans were involved in yet more ugly exchanges in the French port town of Marseille, as a second night of fighting and violence saw supporters pelting missiles from a roadside brasserie.

England Hooligans

Source: AAP

Disturbing footage from Marseille - the focal point for many Three Lions supporters ahead of the EURO 2016 match against Russia - showed a group of fans shouting "have it" as they pelted objects into the street from the Red Eagle.

Some supporters lobbed bottles and chairs from the venue - with the odd missile simply striking the canopy above them - while the background was illuminated by a raging bright light from a powerful flare at the entrance of the building.

Police could be seen gathered a short distance away.

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Earlier, officers deployed tear gas in an effort to disperse the troublemakers but the ugly skirmishes continued as darkness fell.

In scenes reminiscent of the dark days of hooliganism, bare-chested England fans threw beer bottles at police dressed in full riot gear as frequent, short-lived confrontations marred the start of the European Championship.

Fist fights broke out between English, French and Russian-speaking men, and one man was thrown into the harbour after he was beaten to the ground by local fans.

Police with helmets, batons and shields stood shoulder to shoulder along the cobbled street facing a line of England fans, some of whom threw bottles. One fan wearing a red England shirt was handcuffed and arrested.

The violence first broke out at about 6.20pm French time outside the Queen Victoria pub in the Old Port district where England fans had been drinking for most of the day.

Fans sang songs about the IRA, German bombers being shot down and the national anthem.



The start of the tournament, officially marked by a 2-1 win for the hosts over Romania in Paris on Friday evening, was marred by images of brawls between rival supporters, violence and confrontations with local police.

The latest clashes came after a night of violence in the southern French city.



One England supporter suffered a head injury in Thursday night's brawl after being hit across the face with a wooden chair, and according to reports, some England fans were heard chanting: "Isis, where are you?"

As the disorder lurched into another day, bare-chested England fans could be seen dodging the gas deployed by police as an afternoon of drinking and singing turned into an ugly stand-off with police.



Police with helmets, batons and shields grappled troublemakers to the ground amid beer bottles and rubbish strewn across the cobbled streets.

While the disturbances were often violent, they were also often short-lived.

And although bottles being lobbed in various directions sent crowds of supporters fleeing, the French gendarmerie were quick to separate rival groups of fans and clear the danger areas.

Each time, it left staff working in the local tourist trade to clear up the aftermath, with broken bottles, debris and litter strewn across roads and pavement.

And after a brief period of quiet, it was not long before football chants were heard again.


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3 min read
Published 11 June 2016 at 8:13am
Source: PA Sport