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16th Jul 2021

Italian restaurant smashed up by ‘mindless idiots’ after Euro 2020 final

Kieran Galpin

More mindless violence at the hands of England fans, including an Italian Restaurant

An Italian restaurant in Sleaford was targeted following the Euros final and was then vandalised by “mindless idiots.” Marc Jones, the chair of the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (APCC), said that disorder spread through most of the country.

England’s defeat at the hands of Italy not only sparked racist abuse directed towards players but untold chaos across the country. Within Wembley itself, The Evening Standard reports that there were eighty-six people arrested and nineteen officers injured.

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Laurence Taylor said:

“Throughout the course of the Euros tournament, the vast majority of people have watched the matches responsibly and safely and enjoyed the build up to last night’s final.

“However, the unacceptable scenes we saw yesterday were a small number of people intent on using the football as an excuse to behave appallingly towards other members of the public and officers.

“The entire seating area outside was smashed to pieces,” Mr Jones told a press conference on Thursday.

“Completely mindless idiots – they were smashing up the only Italian restaurant in their town. How do you deal with people who think that is ok?”

He said that “something just switches” in the minds of law-abiding citizens when there is a football match on, and judging by reports, Mr Jones has hit the nail on the head.

“You really need to get people and be very public saying ‘these are who the people are who did this thing’. Let their friends, family, employers, colleagues see who they are,” he said.

The Independent reports that more than 2,300 incidents linked to the Euros were reported. Said crimes include stabbings, glassings, fights and assaults on police officers, with 630 people having been arrested in conjunction with the crimes.

Festus Akinbusoye, the Conservative PCC for Bedfordshire, said the disorder at Wembley and elsewhere pointed to a “wider issue with culture around football”.

“Rather than focusing on policing I would like us to discuss the culture of football that attracts this kind of mindless destructive vandalism,” he added.

There is undoubtedly a need for a culture change within English football. However, not many people are prepared to have this conversation, and so, it will be down to Government and governing football bodies to make sweeping changes to the way they police their fans.

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