City bans alcohol for England v Wales

Euro 2016: England v Wales

England and Wales fans will not be allowed to drink alcohol in Lens around their sides’ Euro 2016 game after a 24-hour ban was put in place.

The Group B tie takes place in the French city at 14:00 BST on Thursday, 16 June and will be live on the BBC.

The ban will run from 06:00 local time on Thursday until 06:00 on Friday, with French authorities searching cars travelling into Lens for alcohol.

Fans without tickets for the match or fan zone have been told not to travel.

British police have told ticketless supporters to go to Lille, or another city with a fan zone, to watch the game.

Every game in Lens will be given the same alcohol restriction, with the Albania v Switzerland and the Czech Republic v Turkey group games, as well as a round-of-16 match, also being held in the city.

England, Wales and Northern Ireland are all competing in the 24-team tournament, which is being held across France between 10 June and 10 July.

Police expect between 350,000 and 500,000 supporters to travel from the United Kingdom to the tournament.

There were about 250,000 tickets sold to UK residents from 1.6m applications.

“More fans are expected to travel to France than any previous tournament and we are working with the French police for a trouble-free competition,” said Assistant Chief Constable Mark Roberts, the National Police Chiefs’ Council lead for football policing.

“Our officers will be supporting the French authorities by providing intelligence, identifying known risk supporters, engaging with UK supporters and advising the local police on appropriate tactics with visiting fans.

“The vast majority of supporters from England, Northern Ireland and Wales will be genuine fans who are travelling to France to enjoy the football and our policing team will provide a reassuring presence at venue cities.

“There is no excuse for violence, disorder or anti-social behaviour at football matches – troublemakers will be dealt with by French police in line with their laws and can expect a banning order on return to the UK.”

British police are hoping to act as “cultural interpreters” to prevent heavy-handed tactics against drunk and rowdy fans who may not cause serious trouble.

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