England manager Roy Hodgson and captain Wayne Rooney have called on fans to“stay out of trouble” after UEFA threatened to disqualify England and Russia from the Euro 2016.
It comes in the wake of the violence that marred England’s opening Group B match against Russia last Saturday, which followed three days of clashes between English, Russian and French fans in Marseille, drawing a strong response from riot police.
“As England Manager I’m obviously very concerned about the threat which is now hanging over and the sanctions that could possibly be imposed upon the England team and I’m appealing therefore to all of our fans, we appreciate your support at the matches of course, but I’m appealing to you to stay out of trouble and try to make certain that these threats that are being issued are never carried out, and we will be able to attempt to do the best we can to stay in this competition by football means,” said Roy Hodgson.
England Captain Wayne Rooney said: “I’d like to thank England fans for the great support inside the stadium against Russia and now we have a big game coming up against Wales. I’d like to ask the fans ‘Please, if you don’t have a ticket, don’t travel, and to the fans with tickets, be safe, be sensible and continue with your great support for the players.’”
There are now concerns for the northern French city of Lille, where Russia plays Slovakia on Wednesday before England face Wales in nearby Lens on Thursday. England fans have been advised by the authorities to stay away from Lens if they don’t have a ticket and to head for Lille instead, sparking fears of renewed violence with Russia fans.