England fans take over German city – Police presence and smashed bottles in Frankfurt | Football | Sport

There’s a heavy police presence in Frankfurt this evening as hundreds of England fans party in the city’s main square ahead of tomorrow’s Euro 2024 clash with Denmark.

Shards of glass from broken bottles fill the streets while the controversial Ten German Bombers song has been heard being chanted by a section of Three Lions supporters.

The Daily Express’ Zak Garner-Purkis, who is at the scene, has decribed a tense but so far peaceful atmosphere, with police keeping a close eye on fans, with an estimated 1,000 crammed into the square.

Some 30 police officers are monitoring the England supporters, some from vantage points, others dispersed within the crowd, as they look to ensure no repeat of the ugly scenes in Gelsenkirchen on Sunday when a bar was smashed up ahead of the game with Serbia.

Having moved on to Frankfurt, police have told the Express fans have been drinking “all day” with most bringing their own booze rather than buying it from the bars and restaurants that surround the square.

Old men and women who appear to be homeless have been collecting up the smashed bottles. At one point they joined in with the Ten German Bombers song, seemingly not aware of its meaning.

The floor at the scene is sticky with spilled beer while a ragged football is also being booted around the square.

Some fans were also heard chanting “have you ever seen the Germans win a war” and singing in support of Tommy Robinson.

READ MORE: ‘These are the tactics German police use to stop things kicking off at Euros’

As well as Ten German Bombers – which both the British and German police have appealed for fans not to sing – the likes of Sweet Caroline and Vindaloo have been belted out.

Two German fans walking past the square told the Express: “We like the England fans, they are cool.

“The atmosphere is better here than with the German fans.”

Most German supporters making their way home from watching their team play earlier in the day have a mixture of bemusement, curiosity or fear on their faces as they encounter the English crowd.

A couple of English fans have been flirting with girls in punk German shirts by explaining what the bombers song is about.

Among the England fans, there are Millwall flags, as well as a number of Leeds United and Arsenal supporters.

A police officer told the Express it had been “peaceful all day” but “if anything happens we will deal with it”.

In Gelsenkirchen, England started their Euro 2024 campaign with a narrow 1-0 win over Serbia.

One England fan and seven Serbs are facing criminal charges after the trouble involving about 150 fans before the game.

Gelsenkirchen’s chief of police, Peter Both, said it was not clear who started the violence.

He explained: “The Serbian fan group was already in the restaurant and obviously ate there and then a larger group of English fans then tried to get into this restaurant as well. And that’s exactly what sparked the dispute.

“What we can hardly say now, of course, in retrospect, is did the Serbs refuse entry to the English or did the English provoke the Serbs? Of course, this can hardly be brightened up afterwards. The fact is that when they tried to enter the pub, there was an immediate physical altercation.

“We subsequently made several detentions. We carried out a total of around 50 identity checks. We took eight fans into custody before the game, who were then unable to watch the game.

“If we had predicted in the opening press conference that there would be one detention [of an England fan], then we would all have gladly taken it.

“Why did the police only take seven or eight people into custody when there were 150 people running around? The first issue is that you can only take someone into custody if you can make an individual accusation.

“So the ones where we can say either via video recordings or via personal evidence from deployed police officers, I can prove that you threw this chair, you threw this glass, you hit that one, have seen that, I can prove it – only those are then taken into custody accordingly.

“We have everyone’s personal details and are now in contact with the organiser, with Uefa, because we would already make a recommendation to Uefa. They can see if these people still have tickets for other games and we would recommend that these tickets are then blocked for the next games.”

England’s fixture against Denmark on Thursday has been classified as ‘high risk’ but alcohol restrictions have been relaxed for the game.

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