The Latest: English football chief voices security concerns

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Posted: Jun 13, 2016 5:59 PM
The Latest: English football chief voices security concerns

PARIS (AP) — The Latest from soccer's European Championship (all times local):

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11.55 p.m.

The head of English football says he has "serious concerns" about the security arrangements for England's match against Wales in the European Championship on Thursday.

The match will be played in the northern city of Lens, which is only 30 kilometers (around 20 miles) from Lille, where Russia will take on Slovakia the day before.

There were violent clashes between fans of England and Russia in Marseille last week, and UEFA has threatened the countries with potential expulsion from the tournament if there is more fighting among supporters.

In a letter to UEFA, Football Association Chairman Greg Dyke has urged the body to bring together the policing authorities in Lens and Lille and put a "coordinated and effective plan in place."

Dyke says "we are working with all of the authorities and UEFA to do everything we can to avoid a repeat."

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11:05 p.m.

The British government has told England and Wales fans to stay away from Lille and Lens if they don't have tickets for the European Championship soccer match between the teams.

England and Wales play Thursday in Lens, only 30 kilometers (around 20 miles) from Lille, where Russia will take on Slovakia on Wednesday.

The new warning from Britain's Foreign Office follows clashes between England and Russia fans in Marseille last week.

The British government's updated travel advice says fans headed to northern France "are advised to be cautious and those without tickets for the match should avoid Lille and Lens during this period."

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10:51 p.m.

Emanuele Giaccherini and Graziano Pelle scored in each half Monday, giving Italy a 2-0 win over Belgium at the European Championship.

Center back Leonardo Bonucci met Giaccherini's run through the heart of the Belgian defense with a perfectly-weighted lob that the midfielder skillfully put past goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois in the 32nd minute.

Pelle added the second in stoppage time.

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10:49 p.m.

GOAL: Graziano Pelle scores for Italy in stoppage time. Italy leads Belgium 2-0.

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9:49 p.m.

Emanuele Giaccherini scored to give Italy a 1-0 halftime lead over Belgium at the European Championship in Lyon.

Center back Leonardo Bonucci met Giaccherini's run through the heart of the Belgian defense with a perfectly-weighted lob that the midfielder skillfully put past goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois in the 32nd minute.

Italy started well with two early counterattacks that caused the opposing defense to scramble.

Radja Nainggolan drew the first good save from Gianluigi Buffon with a long strike the veteran goalkeeper parried wide after a Belgium buildup.

But after a period of Belgium on the attack, Italy pushed the action back the other way. After Giaccherini's goal, Belgium creaked at the back and Graziano Pelle went close to adding another for Italy with a header.

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9:40 p.m.

Emanuele Giaccherini ran onto Leonardo Bonucci's perfectly-weighted lob from the back of the defense and slotted a right-footed shot past goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois to give Italy a 1-0 lead over Belgium.

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9:32 p.m.

GOAL: Emanuele Giaccherini scores for Italy in the 32nd minute. Italy leads Belgium 1-0.

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8:55 p.m.

A Marseille court has convicted six English soccer fans and handed prison sentences ranging from one-to-three months to five of them for involvement in rioting at the European Championship.

The swift sentencing Monday appeared aimed at sending a message to potential hooligans for the rest of the monthlong tournament being played in cities throughout France.

Defense lawyer Henri Viguier says the sentences were a consequence of a climate of fear surrounding Euro 2016 and "in another context, the sentences would have been totally different."

At the same court, a French man was sentenced to a year in prison and an Austrian was given a five-month prison term, also for involvement in the three days of rioting that left the streets of Marseille littered with broken glass and furniture ripped from terraces.

One English man was given a suspended one-month sentence and all the foreigners were banned from France for two years.

There were no Russians on trial, despite a Marseille prosecutor earlier in the day blaming "highly trained" Russian thugs for the worst of the violence in the cobbled streets of the city's Old Port and around the Stade Velodrome.

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8:45 p.m.

Belgium coach Marc Wilmots has included the injury-prone Thomas Vermaelen and the little-used Laurent Ciman in his depleted defense. Vermaelen has been limited by injuries for several seasons, while Ciman will get his 12th cap for Belgium at the age of 30.

Vincent Kompany and Nicolas Lombaerts are both out through injury for Belgium's defense, which features regular starters Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen.

Despite his pre-match talk about "chameleon-like" tactics, Italy coach Antonio Conte has stuck with the three-man defense of Leonardo Bonucci, Andrea Barzagli and Giorgio Chiellini in front of Juventus teammate Gianluigi Buffon.

Daniele De Rossi will do his best in a midfield missing the injured Marco Verratti and Claudio Marchisio.

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8:25 p.m.

Here are the lineups for the match between Belgium and Italy at Stade de Lyon:

Belgium: Thibaut Courtois, Toby Alderweireld, Thomas Vermaelen, Radja Nainggolan, Jan Vertonghen, Axel Witsel, Kevin De Bruyne, Marouane Fellaini, Romelu Lukaku, Eden Hazard, Laurent Ciman.

Italy: Gianluigi Buffon, Giorgio Chiellini, Mateo Darmian, Antonio Candreva, Graziano Pelle, Andrea Barzagli, Daniele De Rossi, Eder, Marco Parolo, Leonardo Bonucci, Emanuele Giaccherini.

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8:00 p.m.

There will be a minute's silence in all European Championship fan zones at 8:30 p.m. local time Monday to honor the 49 people killed at an Orlando nightclub.

The Paris town hall press office says in a statement that the moment of silence will be a mark of support for the victims, their relatives and the American people as a whole.

The office says "the tribute will also be the occasion to reaffirm values of freedom, tolerance, living-together and sharing, which play a fundamental role in the world of football and sports."

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7:55 p.m.

Portugal coach Fernando Santo says Ricardo Quaresma could still play in Tuesday's game against Iceland despite a muscle injury.

The Besiktas winger did not train on Sunday because of pain in his right thigh but Santos says he will decide at the last minute whether he will include him in his squad.

Santos says "we have 24 hours to decide whether he is fit ... Right now I have no doubts he'll be among us."

If Quaresma is not fit, Nani is expected to play in support of Cristiano Ronaldo up front.

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7:50 p.m.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic rescued Sweden yet again in a 1-1 draw with Ireland on Monday, even if he couldn't set a European Championship scoring record.

Sweden trailed an impressive Ireland team until the 71st minute when Ibrahimovic created the equalizer.

Gliding to the byline, the Sweden captain clipped a ball across the goalmouth that Ireland defender Ciaran Clark stooped to head into his own net.

Ireland took a deserved lead in the 48th minute with Wes Hoolahan's sweetly struck half volley from a dozen meters (yards).

Ireland midfielder Jeff Hendrick went close with a series of shots, including one that struck the crossbar in the 32nd.

Ibrahimovic twice hooked left-foot shots wide as he tried to become the first player to score in four different European Championships.

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7:32 p.m.

Ireland defender Ciaran Clark inadvertently stooped a header into his own net as he tried to intercept a cross from Sweden forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

The 71st minute own-goal means Ireland and Sweden are tied 1-1 in their Group E match.

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7:29 p.m.

GOAL: Ireland defender Ciaran Clark scores an own-goal in the 71st minute. Sweden and Ireland are tied 1-1.

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7:10 p.m.

Ireland midfielder Wes Hoolahan smacked home a half-volley from a dozen yards (meters) after a smart cut back by Seamus Coleman.

The goal gives Ireland a 1-0 lead over Sweden in the Group E match.

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7:05 p.m.

GOAL: Wes Hoolahan scores for Ireland in the 48th minute. Ireland leads Sweden 1-0.

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6:50 p.m.

British police say additional officers have been deployed to France following the unrest between England and Russia fans around their game in Marseille on Saturday.

England is playing Wales on Thursday in Lens, only 30 kilometers (around 20 miles) from Lille, where Russia will take on Slovakia the previous day.

Mark Roberts, who leads soccer policing in Britain, says "additional officers from the UK have been deployed to support the French policing operation in Lens and Lille in the lead up to the next game."

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6:30 p.m.

The Welsh soccer association has advised fans to avoid traveling to Lille and Lens for the European Championship game against England if they don't have a ticket.

Rioting marred England's game against Russia in Marseille on Saturday.

England and Wales play their next match in Lens on Thursday, while Russia faces Slovakia in nearby Lille on Wednesday.

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6:25 p.m.

Shops and supermarkets in the French city of Lyon have been banned from selling alcohol to fans for the duration of the European Championship.

Michel Delpuech, the Lyon area's top official, took the decision after Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve called on local authorities to use all measures to prevent fan violence after drink-fueled rioting by England and Russia fans in Marseille over the weekend.

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5:20 p.m.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic will lead Sweden's attack in its opening European Championship game against Ireland, whose own fans' favorite Jon Walters was passed fit to play.

Ibrahimovic is playing in his fourth straight European Championship and will set a tournament record if he maintains his standard of scoring in each one.

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5:10 p.m.

A male fan ran onto the field after Spain beat the Czech Republic 1-0 Monday at the Stadium de Toulouse and was able to hug and greet several players without stadium stewards reacting.

The fan ran toward the Spanish players and hugged goal scorer Gerard Pique, and shook the hands of several other players. He was able to freely walk back toward the stands after more than a minute on the field.

He strolled back toward the stands and a UEFA official finally told a female steward to deal with him. She guided him back into the stands.

The fan wasn't wearing team colors.

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5:05 p.m.

Here are the lineups for the match between Ireland and Sweden at Stade de France:

Ireland: Darren Randolph, Seamus Coleman, John O'Shea, Ciaran Clark, Robbie Brady, James McCarthy, Glenn Whelan, Jeff Hendrick, Wes Hoolahan, Jon Walters, Shane Long.

Sweden: Andreas Isaksson, Mikael Lustig, Victor Lindelof, Andreas Granqvist, Martin Olsson, Sebastian Larsson, Oscar Lewicki, Kim Kallstrom, Emil Forsberg, Marcus Berg, Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

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4:49 p.m.

Gerard Pique scored late to ensure Spain opened the defense of its European Championship title with a 1-0 win over Czech Republic.

Pique scored with three minutes remaining, heading in Andres Iniesta's cross.

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4:45 p.m.

Gerard Pique scored late on to put Spain 1-0 up against Czech Republic.

The Barcelona defender rose highest to head in Andres Iniesta's cross.

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4:43 p.m.

GOAL: Gerard Pique scores for Spain in the 87th minute. Spain leads the Czech Republic 1-0.

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4:30 p.m. The English soccer fan who was given a three-month prison sentence for involvement in rioting has been identified as Ian Hedworth, a psychiatric nurse, according to his French lawyer.

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4:15 p.m.

The head of the All-Russian Fans' Union tells The Associated Press that French police raided a hotel in Cannes on Sunday, a day after violence marred Russia's game against England.

Alexander Shprygin says 40 armed French police photographed Russian fans and confiscated alcohol during the raid.

He says it was not clear if the police were looking for specific individuals. He says about 15 Russians were in the hotel because many others were visiting a memorial.

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4:08 p.m.

A French court has convicted two English soccer fans of involvement in rioting in Marseille and sentenced them to two months and three months in prison.

Alex Booth was sentenced to two months and another fan was given a three-month sentence.

Booth, who spent his 20th birthday in a French jail cell following his arrest, put his head in his hands as the judge passed sentence.

His father shouted "miscarriage" as his son was led from court and called the decision a "disgrace." He said French authorities were "making a scapegoat of a poor kid like Alex" and said they should "find the real thugs."

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3:55 p.m.

The head of the All-Russian Fans' Union tells The Associated Press that the risk of more violence at upcoming games is lower because many Russians are returning home.

Alexander Shprygin says "there will be three times fewer Russians than there were in Marseille" when the team plays Slovakia in Lille on Wednesday.

The All-Russian Fans' Union is a body with backing from the Russian government and soccer authorities.

Shprygin says many fans, both ordinary supporters and troublemakers, have flown back to Russia after Saturday's 1-1 draw with England for financial reasons. Travel abroad is costly for Russians after the ruble fell sharply in value.

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3:50 p.m.

Two England fans appeared in a packed Marseille court Monday afternoon.

One of them, identified as Alex Booth, spent his 20th birthday in jail following his arrest for involvement in rioting.

After prosecutors demanded a two-month sentence, Booth, still wearing an England shirt, told the court, "I was in the wrong place at the wrong time. I am really, really sorry."

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3:15 p.m.

Russia defender Roman Shishkin thanked the national team's fans for their support in the opening match against England.

Russian hooligans fought with English fans before, during and after the 1-1 in Marseille. Dozens were injured in the violence.

Shishkin says "once again, I want to thank our supporters. They are there for us. We don't know what happened exactly on the streets. Our work is to play, to train, and we thank the supporters."

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2:10 p.m.

David De Gea will be in goal when Spain begins its European Championship title defense against the Czech Republic.

The Manchester United goalkeeper will start despite getting embroiled in an off-the-field controversy just three days before Monday's game, after his name appeared in a police investigation into a Spanish pornographic filmmaker.

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1:55 p.m.

Here are the lineups for the match between Spain and the Czech Republic in Toulouse in Group D:

Spain: David De Gea, Juanfran Torres, Sergio Ramos, Gerard Pique, Jordi Alba, Sergio Busquets, Andres Iniesta, Cesc Fabregas, David Silva, Manuel "Nolito" Agudo, Alvaro Morata.

Czech Republic: Petr Cech, Pavel Kaderabek, Tomas Sivok, Roman Hubnik, David Limbersky, Vladimir Darida, Jaroslav Plasil, Theodor Gebre-Selassie, Ladislav Krejci, Tomas Rosicky, Tomas Necid.

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1:45 p.m.

England coach Roy Hodgson and captain Wayne Rooney have appealed to fans to behave after UEFA threatened to kick the team out of the European Championship.

The video messages were published Monday, one day after UEFA warned the English and Russian soccer federations they risked being disqualified for a repeat of violence in Marseille which blighted the teams' opening Euro 2016 match on Saturday.

Hodgson says "I am obviously very concerned about the threat which is now hanging over us."

The coach appealed to fans ahead of Thursday's match against Wales in Lens to "stay out of trouble," adding: "We worked very hard to get here and we really desperately want to stay in the competition."

Rooney tells fans: "Please, if you don't have a ticket, don't travel."

To fans going to the match, Rooney says: "Be safe, be sensible and continue with your great support for the players."

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12:55 p.m.

UEFA has opened a disciplinary case against the Croatian soccer federation after a fan ran on the field to join players celebrating a goal against Turkey.

UEFA says Croatia is charged with "field invasions by supporters." Its disciplinary panel will judge the case on July 21.

Croatia and Turkey have also been charged with fans lighting fireworks, and Turkey for a firework being thrown.

National soccer federations are held responsible by UEFA for their fans' behavior in and around stadiums.

After Luka Modric's 41st-minute goal in a 1-0 win at Parc des Princes on Sunday, a man came to the edge of the field from the main stand.

Wearing a red-and-white checkerboard Croatia shirt, he huddled with blue-shirted players by the corner flag before being led away by stadium security staff.

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12:25 p.m.

Croatia captain Darijo Srna has left France to return home for the funeral of his father.

Croatian soccer federation spokesman Tomislav Pacak says Srna has joined his family in his hometown Metkovic. The federation has also sent officials to be with their most capped international.

Srna was told that his father, Uzeir, had died soon after Croatia's 1-0 win over Turkey in Paris on Sunday.

It is unclear if Srna will return for the team's second Euro 2016 match on Friday against the Czech Republic in Saint-Etienne.

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12:20 p.m.

A Northern Ireland fan has died in the French city of Nice, where the country's national soccer team was playing at the European Championship.

The Northern Irish soccer association confirmed the death in a statement Monday, but did not name the person or give any details. The death did not appear to be related to violence.

Alan McVeigh, a spokesman for the Police Service of Northern Ireland, says it was "a man in his 20s from Northern Ireland."

Local French authorities had previously said nine people were injured Saturday in Nice, including one with head injuries. That followed clashes between local Nice hardcore fans and supporters of Poland and Northern Ireland.

Poland beat Northern Ireland 1-0 on Sunday.

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11:50 a.m.

Marseille prosecutor Brice Robin says 150 Russian hooligans were behind much of the violence that broke out in Marseille ahead of the England-Russia game on Saturday.

Robin spoke after a weekend of violence in the French port city ahead of the European Championship soccer game on Saturday, which ended in a 1-1 draw.

About 35 people have been injured, including four people whose conditions were described as serious. Robin told reporters Monday that while "almost of those who were wounded were British," England supporters were also responsible for some of the violence.

He said 20 people have been arrested. Ten of them — six Brits, an Austrian and three French — will face immediate trial.