The 2016 UEFA European Championship, or simply Euro 2016, has so far been an ugly mess of vicious clashes and mass brawls. In fact, fan violence has almost completely eclipsed the highly anticipated sports event.
The bout of terrifying and spiteful violence began on Saturday after Russian and English soccer fans, cooped up in the French port city of Marseille for far too long, got involved in a brutal face-off. The chaos left many bloodied and wounded, while one England fan, 51-year-old Andrew Bache, reportedly suffered serious brain injuries after Russia supporters attacked him with iron bars.
“We had planned and prepared for disorder hoping that it wouldn’t take place, while being ready for anything,” said Chief Supt Neill of Northumbria Police. “But the scale and ferocity of what we witnessed was beyond anything myself and the delegation had witnessed before, and this is a delegation of very experienced officers.”
For a decade, he successfully managed the usually tense derbies between Newcastle United and Sunderland. However, the violence he witnessed in Marseille was fiercer than anything he had ever seen before.
“It was disappointing and it’s also very sad that so many English supporters were injured, and some very seriously. It is also sad for the city of Marseille,” he added.
In another deplorable incident, England fans were filmed mocking poor, migrant children. The soccer fanatics were seen throwing money in the air and encouraging young boys to fight over it.
German and Ukrainian fans also clashed in the street of Lille this week while local hooligans also attacked Irish and Polish fans.
Find out more in the video above.