England fans gather in Rome
England supporters are starting to gather in Rome ahead of the Three Lions’ Euro 2020 quarter-final with Ukraine – despite warnings not to travel due to the pandemic.
Pundits have backed Gareth Southgate’s side to overcome a plucky Ukraine outfit but it’s the first match England have had in the tournament away from Wembley.
They remain undefeated after three wins and a draw at the iconic arena in games in front of passionate crowds of up to 41,000.
Malcolm Clarke, chairman of the Football Supporters’ Association, admitted fans had felt disappointed at not being able to travel to Italy. The nation is on the UK’s amber list.
However, it is understood some fans are already present near Roma and Lazio’s Stadio Olimpico, which can hold 70,000.
Luke Curner, originally from Folkestone, Kent, was able to avoid isolation as he travelled from Helmstedt, Germany, where he lives with his wife and children.
The 36-year-old bought tickets for the match in 2019 as it falls on his birthday weekend.
He said: “I feel very privileged to be here, I’m usually on the wrong end of these kind of situations.”
Jack Francis, 20, from Southampton, travelled to Rome from France and said he feels “lucky” to be able to go.
“It feels very surreal, and hopefully it will be a memorable game which will be talked about for years to come if we go all the way,” he added.
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