Armed police to patrol England v France friendly

The Wembley stadium arch is illuminated in red, white, and blue lights, as France players warm up. Picture: Getty
The Wembley stadium arch is illuminated in red, white, and blue lights, as France players warm up. Picture: Getty
Share this article
0
Have your say

Armed officers will be deployed at Wembley Stadium for the England versus France football match in the wake of the Paris terrorist attacks, the Metropolitan Police has said.

The international friendly is being played tonight, just four days after the co-ordinated strikes across the French capital.

Meanwhile, it emerged that the Duke of Cambridge has decided to attend the match in his role as Football Association president out of “solidarity to the people of France”. Sources said Prince William had not been due to go to the fixture, but wanted to do so. Fans have been told to expect an increased police presence at transport hubs and “in and around” the stadium.

Deputy assistant commander Peter Terry, from the Met’s Specialist Crime and Operations Command, said: “We’ve reassessed what security we need for tomorrow night’s occasion, which will of course be a fairly sombre occasion especially considering who we’re playing.”

Mr Terry said no specific threat had been made against the match, but asked fans to be the police’s “eyes and ears”.

He said: “It’s extremely important we show support to the people of Paris, people we have the greatest sympathy with at this moment in time.”

The friendly will see Wembley Arch lit up in the red, white and blue colours of the French flag.

Screens will show the French motto “Liberte, Egalite, Fraternite” outside the ground and before kick-off the words of La Marseillaise – the French national anthem – will be shown to help any England fans who want to join in.