Jun 17, 2016

    Gloves off as French riot police charge at English and Russian fans


    FRENCH police repeatedly fired tear gas and baton- charged England and Russia fans in Lille as Euro 2016's hooligan protagonists took their rivalry to a new city.

    Tens of thousands of English, Welsh, Russian and Slovakian supporters took over the city and brawling erupted between rival groups as a day of heavy beer-drinking took its toll.

    Anxious to avoid the 35 injuries caused by unrest in Marseille on Saturday, each time serious trouble loomed, a legion of riot squad gathered behind shields, fired tear gas and flash bombs and charged.

    The scene was repeated across central Lille into the night. One group of 200 chanting supporters was broken up just before midnight.

    French fans coming out of the Lille fan zone after France's 2-0 win over Albania then threw bottles and stones at police.

    Trouble also boiled over on a French train heading to Lille from Calais. England and Wales fans fought each other and five were arrested when the train arrived, authorities said.

    Police said 36 arrests were made in total and 16 people were injured. Three Russians and a Ukrainian were to be expelled from the country.