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WATCH: English fans turn downtown Dortmund into huge football pitch

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WATCH: English fans turn downtown Dortmund into huge football pitch
An England fan in Berlin in 2006. Photo: DPA
15:09 CET+01:00
English fans played an impromptu football game in the Old Market Square in Dortmund on Tuesday - and they went ballistic when one of them scored a goal.

England fans staged their street football match ahead of England's game against Germany on Wednesday evening. 

The video shows the square cleared with chairs from local restaurants set out as goal posts, and fans can be heard chanting and singing.

Fans are seen storming the "pitch," singing and dancing after one of the participants scores a goal. Other fans can be seen throwing glasses into the air which smash on the paving stones near some of the supporters.

On Tuesday evening, police in Düsseldorf were confronted by the first signs of trouble from English fans, Ruhr Nachrichten reports.

About 700 English fans had met in the alleys and bars of the city centre to drink together. Police stepped in to send some aggressive fans away, but had bottles thrown at them by the crowd. Two people were taken into custody.

On the same evening 37 German gang-members were also stopped at the edge of the Düsseldorf old city, reportedly on their way to fight the English fans. They were all taken into custody by police. 

Dortmund police have also increased security ahead of the friendly international due to previous experience of riotous English hooligans.

"We have more officers on duty than for a game against Spain or Jamaica for example," police spokesman Gunnar Wortmann told DPA on Tuesday. 

There have already been significantly more police deployed in the city in preparation for the game, with many assigned to train stations and inside trains around the city.

The biggest police presence, however, will be around the city centre and the stadium. A police spokeswoman refused to disclose to The Local how many police were on the streets, but said that they will "react to the continuous assessments of the situation with appropriate force."

The spokeswoman also said that Dortmund police have had previous experience with English football fans when club supporters have travelled to the city for European games. 

"English football fans are a celebratory people, who do not say no to alcohol," she added.

But she also noted that "as long as everything stays peaceful, we won't hold fans back from celebrating."

The traditional rivalry between English and German fans has caused clashes before, and German police have prepared for hooliganism from the English at previous games too. 

English fans garner lots of respect from hooligans around Europe, having been famous for riotous and destructive behaviour in the 1970s and 80s. Many German hooligans even still say they admire English fans.

With DPA

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