Violence between fans, especially between English and Russian fans, has been a major concern for the upcoming World Cup and authorities are doing all they can to prevent incidents from happening.
The latest step to prevent violence from happening involves police giving out guides to England fans. The Guardian reports that authorities will give a guide to ”sensitive sites” in the city of Volgograd, which is one of the host cities of the 2018 World Cup.
England’s First Match
Authorities will also warn fans about singing inappropriate songs or hanging flags that may provoke a violent response from other fans. Estimates say up to 10,000 England fans could visit Russia for the tournament, which will begin next month.
England will play its first match of the group stage on June 18. They will be facing Tunisia in the city of Volgograd. Estimates say around 2,000 England fans have tickets for that match. Volgograd is one of eleven host cities for the 2018 World Cup.
Incidents At The Euro 2016
In recent months, authorities in Russia have announced several steps to prevent violence during the World Cup. They will not only have police near the stadiums but also guides to make sure that fans don’t spark incidents.
Police are doing everything they can to avoid the incidents that happened during the UEFA Euro 2016. In that tournament, there were several incidents between Russian and England fans. Two England fans were seriously injured during those incidents while police arrested many other fans after clashes outside and inside the stadiums.
Chief Inspector Joseph Stokoe, who recently visited the city where England will play its first match, says it is fine to hang flags inside the stadiums or in a pub where the owner is okay with it. Mark Roberts, an official of football policing, says fans should avoid displaying flags on the street. He explains that the memorials there are particularly sensitive and that people should be careful with flags.
2018 World Cup Begins Next Month
England will play Tunisia in its first game of the 2018 World Cup. A few days later, they will play Panama. The last game of the group stage will be against Belgium.
Russia will open the 2018 World Cup with a match against Saudi Arabia. The host will later play Egypt and Uruguay in its two other games of the group stage.
The 2018 World Cup begins on June 14 and ends on July 15.