Kevin De Bruyne spotted with black eye in Belgium camp sparking fears Man City ace will miss Euro 2020 opener vs Russia - Godz
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Kevin De Bruyne spotted with black eye in Belgium camp sparking fears Man City ace will miss Euro 2020 opener vs Russia

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KEVIN DE BRUYNE has shown off the shiner that could keep him out of Belgium’s Euro 2020 opener.

The Manchester City ace is a doubt to play Russia on Saturday after undergoing eye surgery on an orbital fracture.

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Kevin De Bruyne was spotted with his black eye in the Belgium camp
Kevin De Bruyne suffered an orbital fracture in a collision with Antonio Rudiger during the Champions League final

The 29-year-old was body checked by Antonio Rudiger in the Champions League final and left the field in tears.

His operation was successful, but De Bruyne remains in a race against the clock to feature against the Russians.

European football correspondant Kristof Terreur showed off a picture of his black eye alongside the caption: “Still unsure he’ll make the bench for Belgium’s first game against Russia.”

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Belgium boss Roberto Martinez has already warned fans that he ‘probably won’t be ready’ for their curtain-raiser.

Speaking on Saturday, he said: “Kevin is doing well. He’s in a good state of mind and can’t wait to join us on the pitch on Monday.

“It is not an operation that prevents you from returning to activity or needs recovery time, it is actually the opposite.

“It should even give him the opportunity to play without the need for protection.

“And that’s the good news. It was done at the right time and this is positive news for the Euros.

“But he probably will not be ready for the first game against Russia and we will need to analyse the situation on a day-by-day basis.”

De Bruyne has 80 caps for his country and has notched 21 goals.

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Jamie Redknapp, Wayne Rooney and Adam Lallana among stars in Wembley crowd to watch England’s Euros opener

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THE celebs were out in force to support England in their Euro 2020 opener against Croatia.

The Three Lions began their campaign at Wembley in front of around 22,500 fans, and some were more recognisable than others.

AFP

The Rooney family watch England take on Croatia at Euro 2020 at Wembley[/caption]

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Spotted in the crowd was ex-Liverpool star-turned TV personality Jamie Redknapp with his mask wrapped around his neck.

Derby County boss Wayne Rooney was also in attendance, alongside wife Coleen – cheering on some of his former team-mates, including Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling.

Brighton star Adam Lallana also looked stylish in a pair of designer shades, protecting his eyes from the beating sunshine.

Former Reds captain Jamie Carragher was also seen enjoying the festivities before the kick off.

Lallana made one fans’ dream come true when he posed for a snap with the youngster.

Redknapp was spotted talking to fans in the stand while holding a bottle of water to stay hydrated in the heat.

Kai and Klay Rooney were seen sat beside their parents eagerly anticipating the match.

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Jamie Redknapp was spotted clutching a bottle of water in the searing Wembley heat[/caption]

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Adam Lallana made a fans’ dream come true by posing for a snap in the stands[/caption]

England are looking to get their Euro 2020 campaign off to a flyer in their first match.

Manager Gareth Southgate sprung a surprise with his starting line-up – starting Kieran Trippier at left-back, instead of his preferred right.

Leeds star Kalvin Phillips was also a shock starter in midfield, with a three man forward line of Foden, Sterling and Kane.

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Euro 2020 – Majority of England fans respect taking of the knee and drown out any attempts to boo by tiny minority

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ENGLAND fans applauded the Three Lions as they took the knee today – drowning out boos by a tiny minority. 

Fans showed respect for the gesture at Wembley by cheering as the players kneeled after pleas for support from Boris Johnson and Gareth Southgate. 

Follow ALL of the latest news and updates from Euro 2020 with our live blog

AFP

England players took the knee this afternoon[/caption]

Kyle Walker takes the knee before kick off
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Midfielders Mason Mount and Kalvin Phillips take a knee before kick off[/caption]

It came after the FA yesterday issued a final plea for fans to support the team and remain silent during the gesture. 

The organisation said the team was taking the knee “as a mechanism of peacefully protesting against discrimination, injustice and inequality”. 

Boris Johnson also said yesterday that he believed it was “totally wrong” to boo the England team during the tournament. 

Manager Gareth Southgate, who has participated in the gesture on the touchline, expressed his hope earlier this week that the nation would unite behind the team during the tournament.

He said: “I think we have got a situation where some people seem to think it’s a political stand that they don’t agree with.

“That’s not the reason that the players are doing it, we’re supporting each other.”

The Croatian players did not take the knee on the pitch.

Times Newspapers Ltd

Marcus Rashford takes the knee at the start of a match between England and Romania[/caption]

The issue has divided the country, with a YouGov poll showing that 54 per cent of fans supported the gesture with 39 per cent opposed.

Supporters have pointed out that the gesture is vital in promoting an anti-racism message at a time when footballers continue to receive vile racist abuse online. 

But critics have claimed it politicises sport, with Tory MP Brendan Clarke-Smith last week saying that fans “are there to watch a football match, not be lectured on morality”. 

Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha earlier this year stopped the gesture, saying it was “degrading”, while a number of football clubs in the Championship made the same decision. 

Certain fans who have chosen to boo also claim that the gesture is linked to Black Lives Matter, who they allege are an extreme political group – though the England players have denied any association with politics.

It marks the third time the England team has been booed for the move after jeers were heard during the Three Lions’ warm-up game at Middlesbrough’s Riverside Stadium last week.

The Scottish FA confirmed this week that its team will take the knee at Wembley Stadium before next Friday’s clash with England.

The organisation was forced into a U-turn after facing a barrage of criticism for choosing to “stand against racism” rather than kneel.

Scotland will stand at Hampden Park for their other two group games but take the knee before playing England, it was confirmed last week.

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Euro 2020: England fans pack out pubs & Wembley Way as team kick off campaign to end 55 years of hurt… COME ON, BOYS!

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NERVOUS England fans have packed out pubs across the country as the Three Lions kick-off their battle to end 55 years of hurt.

Boozed-up supporters are fizzing with excitement as England’s Euro 2020 campaign officially gets underway against Croatia.

Follow ALL of the latest news and updates from Euro 2020 with our live blog

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England fans have joined together for the team’s first Euro 2020 game[/caption]

AFP

Supporters raised a drink inside Wembley as the whistle blew[/caption]

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Fans cheer on England in Box Park in Wembley as they kick off[/caption]

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Fans sing and dance as the atmosphere swells at Wembley[/caption]

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Lads with beers show their support for the first group game[/caption]

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Confident fans are already chanting It’s Coming Home[/caption]

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Celebrations are underway in Box Park in Wembley[/caption]

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A group of mates in Vinegar Yard in London Bridge today[/caption]

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Girls pose with a Gareth Southgate cutout in Hastings[/caption]

The atmosphere is electric across the country as jubilant fans down pints and drape flags around themselves while watching the game.

The opening few minutes have already caused excitement among fans after Phil Foden hit the post.

Supporters in Wembley have already made their voices heard – drowning out a small minority who booed at players taking the knee.

Fans could earlier be heard under the stadium’s famous arch giving a roaring ‘Cheers’ to the Three Lions as beer rained down from the sunny sky.

Rousing choruses of ‘It’s Coming Home’ also echoed through the air as excitement reaches fever-pitch.

Fans are hoping England will get their revenge today after Croatia’s 109-minute goal in extra time of the semi-finals sent England packing at the 2018 World Cup.

They are also praying the team can finally end an agonising 55 years of hurt and bring football home for the first time since 1966.

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Beer falls from the sky as England fans spray booze over Wembley[/caption]

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The excitement has exploded as the tournament gets underway for England[/caption]

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A topless fan dances in Wembley cheered on by his mates[/caption]

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Supporters are on the beers today as the sun shines down on the Three Lions[/caption]

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The atmosphere is palpable in Wembley[/caption]

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Box Park in Wembley is packed with England supporters[/caption]

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It’s Coming Home is already on the lips of England supporters[/caption]

Supporters have been told to come together as one and help make the beautiful game beautiful again.

But some fans have been left baffled by today’s line-up – with both Ben Chilwell and Jadon Sancho left out of the squad entirely.

And Jack Grealish has been left on the bench despite the Villa winger earning a spot in the starting 11 thanks to a successful season.

Fans are also stunned by Gareth Southgate’s decision to play right-back Kieran Trippier on the left over Champion’s Legaue winner Chilwell.

The England line-up has raised a few eyebrows
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A fan in Manchester shows off his war-paint[/caption]

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Trafford Park in Manchester is filled with fans[/caption]

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Fans join the action at Trafford Park[/caption]

But the team do have the home advantage today for their first Group D clash.

England last hosted a major tournament 25 years ago for Euro 1996 – one Gareth Southgate will definitely want to forget after missing a crucial penalty in the semi-finals.

But his young team being led out under Wembley’s arch combined with a 30C heatwave has put a smile on the nation’s faces after a devastating 15 months.

A year-long delay to the tournament due to Covid also means excitement simmering under the surface has now exploded across the country.

Fans have been urged to rally behind the troops, give Covid the middle finger and finally allow hope to cut through the bleakness of the pandemic.

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One lad has shaved the England fan into his chest hair[/caption]

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The excitement is fizzing in the air[/caption]

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Fans could be seen queuing to get into the outdoor bar[/caption]

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A fan quenches his thirst in the scorching heat[/caption]

News Group Newspapers Ltd

Fans at the Skylight Bar in Wapping today[/caption]

News Group Newspapers Ltd

The heatwave and excitement from the football has brought England together[/caption]

The virus has dampened the tournament – with just 22,500 fans allowed in for the match today – but it’s hoped they can roar loudly enough for the missing supporters.

Those attending also need to show proof of vaccination or a negative test before entry.

An official fan zone has been set up in London’s Trafalgar Square for 750 key workers to watch the match on a big screen.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said the excitement of the Euros was needed after “the darkness and trauma” of the pandemic.

Speaking at the official fan zone, he added: “We’ve invited our amazing key workers to thank them for all they’ve done for our city.

“They’ve gone above and beyond over the last 18 months … this is our way to thank them.

“You can tell how excited I am I’m one of the first people here … bring it home. It’ll be nice to see people face to face, facial expressions, body language.

“The best thing about football is that it brings people together.”

Addressing the England team directly, he said: “To Gareth (Southgate) and the entire England squad, London is behind you. Bring it home.”

Other fans have been invited to Box Park in Croydon and Wembley to watch Our Boys throughout the tournament.

They were already queuing to get into Box Park, which is also showing the Group D clash on the big screen, early this morning.

Around 15million people will tune in for the match on the BBC today – the highest TV audience for sport since 2018.

VoucherCodes.co.uk and the Centre for Retail Research reckon £300million will be spent in pubs and restaurants.

Fans will also down a whopping 50million pints and eat their way through 30million burgers and 20million sausages.

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Supporters pack out Wembley Way today for the 2pm kick-off[/caption]

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Smoke fills the air as lucky fans make their way into the stadium[/caption]

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Sadiq Khan led support at the official fan zone in Trafalgar Square[/caption]

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England fans cheers to the Three Lions[/caption]

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Queues outside Box Park in Wembley today as excitement mounts[/caption]

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Supporters flock to Wembley Way beneath the stadium’s famous arch[/caption]

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Just 22,500 fans are able to watch the match inside the stadium[/caption]

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Luke, 13 and Jake, 10, prepare to watch their first-ever England game at Wembley[/caption]

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Two supporters soak up the atmosphere outside the stadium[/caption]

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It was a calmer affair in Trafalgar Square, which is an official fan zone[/caption]

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Key workers have been invited to watch the game on the big screen at Trafalgar Square[/caption]

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Croatia fans let off flares outside the stadium today to show their support[/caption]

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