Officials work to remove ticketless Euros fans after security breach at Wembley
Ticketless fans managed to breach security at Wembley Stadium to get into England’s historic Euro 2020 final.
Security and police are working to remove anyone who made it inside without a ticket, for a match which saw England take an early lead in their bid to be crowned champions of Europe.
The security breach was confirmed by officials shortly before half-time in the match against Italy, which is being attended by Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their son Prince George.
The Italians fired back midway through the second half with a goal, drawing the sides level, but the 1-1 scoreline took the game to extra time.
Former England player David Beckham and the royal couple were all seen looking tense as Wembley’s 60,000-strong crowd, and those watching across the nation, then faced a nail-biting penalty shootout.
A Wembley Stadium spokesman had earlier confirmed there had been “an incident” at the outer security perimeter area, after footage showed a crowd of supporters making a mad dash to get inside, but they said there had been no security breaches.
In an updated statement they said: “There was a breach of security and a small group of people got into the stadium.
“We are now working closely with stadium stewards and security to remove these people.
“Anyone inside the stadium without a ticket will be instantly ejected.”
The Metropolitan Police said they are working with security officials to remove people who should not be there.
In a statement, the force said: “Earlier this afternoon there was a breach of security at Wembley Stadium, which resulted in a small number of people getting into the stadium without a ticket.
“Officers worked closely with security officials to prevent any further breaches. We will also support action by Wembley Stadium officials to identify those without tickets and eject them.”
Security were seen “rugby tackling people to the ground”, one person inside the stadium told the PA news agency.
By half time the situation had calmed down but at one point around 300 people were trying to get through, they told PA.
Some of the people inside Wembley said there had been fans standing on the concourse for the entire first half, watching the match.
People who left their seat at half time were asked to show a ticket before returning, one said.
Roars reverberated around Wembley as Luke Shaw hit the back of the net just two minutes after kick-off, with George among the ecstatic fans cheering the Three Lions.
Kate and William, who is president of the Football Association, clapped after the lightning-fast goal, while George beamed with delight.
The game, which is also being watched by Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his wife Carrie, began after an RAF flypast and performance by the Coldstream Guards band as part of a tournament closing ceremony.
Huge crowds of people have been in party mode outside the stadium and across London throughout the day, proudly sporting the team colours and draped in England flags.
Some fans in Leicester Square were seen throwing bottles and cones and the area was left littered with rubbish.
Supporters have been urged to stay safe and look after each other, with police saying there had been people “jumping off street lamps or hoardings” and warned “this could easily end in injury”.
Some boisterous supporters even climbed on top of a bus outside Wembley, while others outside King’s Cross station in the capital let off red and white smoke during the build-up.
British Transport Police said there had been “multiple cases of flares being set off within the vicinity of railway stations” in London and warned that “these incidents are offences and will be investigated”.
One man had to be taken to hospital after he was hit by a bus in High Road Wembley, police said, but he is in a non life-threatening condition.
Officers also said some people without tickets were attempting to enter the Trafalgar Square fan zone, and urged them to disperse.
The force tweeted: “A large crowd of fans have gathered near to the fan zone in Trafalgar Square attempting to push in without tickets.
“There are no more tickets or seats available in the fan zone. We’re engaging with this crowd and telling them to disperse.”
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