Terror Attacks

Wembley welcomes France and England friendly on a night where football was irrelevant

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A match, whom everyone thought would be cancelled due to the terrorist attacks in Paris on Friday night, has turned out to be an occasion that demonstrated solidarity.

Players In Solidarity Before Kick Off
French & English players in solidarity

The French Football Federation decided the match would go ahead, and The FA backed the decision to have the game played.

France would be welcomed at Wembley in a spirit of fraternity and defiance as an act to stand up to terrorism.

Tricolore Gesture
Wembley tricolore tribute

 

Although France manager Didier Deschamps had offered his players the chance to pull out of the squad before they travelled to London because of the circumstances.

French Football Players Arrival In London
French team arrive in London

Leading up to the game England manager Roy Hodgson said, The match will be a serious occasion but one that shows that the football world is united against these atrocities.”

Security has been increased in the wake of the Paris attacks, as the Metropolitan Police don’t want to see repeat scenes from Friday happening tonight.

Met’s Specialist Crime and Operations Deputy Assistant Commander Peter Terry said, “we’ve reassessed what security we think we need for tonight’s occasion, especially considering who we’re playing. We’ve assessed what happened in France and we’ve changed what the appearance of what the security will look like tonight.”

Heightened Security At Wembley
Security being increased at Wembley Stadium

In a change of protocol, the away team’s national anthem was sung after England’s ‘God Save The Queen’.

Over 70,000 people roared out ‘La Marseillaise’ as a tribute to the 129 victims of Friday’s attacks, England fans in the east side of Wembley held up cards which formed the French Tricolore.

French Tribute At Wembley
French flag tribute in the east stand of Wembley

 

England was victorious winning 2-0.

France’s captain, Hugo Lloris, thanked England’s fans for their support but admitted the French team found it hard to concentrate.

“All of this has been very hard, but we played the match for our country and for the victims. Tonight was a moment of national unity,” said Lloris.

French Players Preparation
French players escorted around Wembley with armed police

 

The result was always going to be meaningless but the occasion couldn’t have been any different and will live in the memory for everyone who watched and attended the match.