Beer and sunshine for England fans

England fans letting their hair down in Donetsk, Ukraine

England fans letting their hair down in Donetsk, Ukraine

First published in National © by

England fans took over a small part of Donetsk on Saturday ahead of the Three Lions' opening match of Euro 2012.

The Golden Lion Irish pub, opposite a giant statue of Russian revolutionary Vladimir Lenin, has become a meeting point for travelling England supporters in the centre of the industrial city.

They unfurled St George flags and enjoyed a few pints in the glorious Ukrainian sunshine ahead of Monday night's game against France.

Sheffield Hallam student Josh Power, 23, from Wolverhampton, said: "I've never been to an England game so I thought this would be the best way to start.

"We were a bit apprehensive before we came out. Panorama had put a question in our mind. Now we're here we're really glad we came.

"Every Ukraine person we've met has been friendly. The city is nice, the women are beautiful and the beer is cheap. We could stay here forever!"

Geoff York, a 58-year-old Eurostar train driver from King's Cross, north London, said: "Before we came out there was all the things in the papers about the trouble out here but the local people have been really good.

"We've been in bars mixing with the locals with no trouble at all."

He added: "Hopefully we'll get a result against France and then we'll be ok, but I think it's that first game that will make the difference."

The number of travelling England fans at Euro 2012 will be the lowest at a tournament for many years, with just 3,000 tickets sold through the supporters' club for their opening game.

The Environment Agency Wales said up to five inches of rain had fallen in some areas in 24 hours(Euro 2012)


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