Friday , July 12 2024

England fans muck around kicking footballs about in 30C heat in Cologne ahead of Three Lions Euros clash with Slovenia at 8pm today – as they vow ‘we are right behind’ Gareth Southgate’s men

England fans have been mucking around in the midday heat of Cologne’s old cobbled Alter Markt square this afternoon ahead of tonight’s Euros clash against Slovenia. 

Topless supporters were seen kicking footballs about as temperatures reached 30C on what is expected to be the hottest night of the tournament so far. 

Sipping pints and chatting to one another, England’s army of support were readying themselves for the Three Lions’ final group game as Gareth Southgate’s men look to get back to winning ways after drawing 1-1 with Denmark on Thursday.

Jamie Whittaker, from Sheffield, sipped her beer and said: ‘The heat is going to play a big factor tonight. It is going to be something that the team hasn’t had to face before. We haven’t really been playing as fast on the pitches as we can, so I hope the temperatures don’t make them even slower.

‘We have to go all out for victory. If we finish second in the group, we might have to play Germany next so we have to avoid that.

‘But it is wonderful to be here in Germany on this day. The Germans have been nothing but hospitable.’

England fans were seen mucking about in the German sunshine ahead of kick-off this evening

England fans were seen mucking about in the German sunshine ahead of kick-off this evening

Topless supporters were seen kicking footballs about as temperatures reached 30C on what is expected to be the hottest night of the tournament so far

Topless supporters were seen kicking footballs about as temperatures reached 30C on what is expected to be the hottest night of the tournament so far

England fans Jamie Whttaker, Danny Henderson and Russell Whittaker, from Sheffield, in Cologne today

England fans Jamie Whttaker, Danny Henderson and Russell Whittaker, from Sheffield, in Cologne today

Supporters baked as temperatures reached 30C on what is expected to be the hottest night of the tournament so far

Supporters baked as temperatures reached 30C on what is expected to be the hottest night of the tournament so far

Barney Ainge gets sun screen protection on his face by family friend Helen Gaffey

Barney Ainge gets sun screen protection on his face by family friend Helen Gaffey

Friend Neil Saxton, son of former Blackburn Rovers manager Bobby, added: ‘We have hired a house here in Cologne and we’ve had barbecues, cold beers and now we’ve got the sunshine. All we need is for England to win tonight.’  

Cameron Dickson, 50, from Carlisle, said: ‘It is hot, but we have got a great team. We’ve got a squad of tremendous individual players, but they really need to come together tonight against Slovenia. I’m confident that we can do it.’

Publican Jamie Cadenhead, 43, from Red Dial near Wigton, added: ‘England have the best supporters and we don’t mind paying a lot of money to get behind them.

‘It will be an incredible atmosphere tonight and let’s hope the boys get inspired by us, don’t get put off by the weather, and go for it.’

Angela Jellicoe, a receptionist from Chelmsford, said: ‘I love this heat. We were in Frankfurt and the weather was dreadful over the few days.

‘I hope the team can overcome the temperature tonight and play their best game. We are all behind them.’

Her husband Richard, a Queens Park Rangers fan, added: ‘This is England’s chance to show how good they are. I hope the criticism they received for the first two games will drive them on.’

Ryan Daffin, 30, from Sheffield, said: ‘I hope the noise in the stadium from the fans is deafening and we all get behind the team.’

England fans had their faces and arms painted with the St George flag and were all smiles in Cologne ahead of the match

England fans had their faces and arms painted with the St George flag and were all smiles in Cologne ahead of the match 

Two fans stand in the searing heat in Cologne and hold aloft some much needed bottles of water

Two fans stand in the searing heat in Cologne and hold aloft some much needed bottles of water

West Ham United fan Corral Blundell, 63, from Newport Pagnall, said: 'It's a lovely day and the atmosphere is just brilliant'

West Ham United fan Corral Blundell, 63, from Newport Pagnall, said: ‘It’s a lovely day and the atmosphere is just brilliant’

Corral with her partner Simon Davies, 64, who raised his beer glass and added: 'This is to Harry Kane and the team. We are right behind them'

Corral with her partner Simon Davies, 64, who raised his beer glass and added: ‘This is to Harry Kane and the team. We are right behind them’

An England fan makes a desperate plea as he holds up a sign written in English and German asking for tickets for 'all games'

An England fan makes a desperate plea as he holds up a sign written in English and German asking for tickets for ‘all games’

England fans Jamie Cadenhead, 43, and Jamie Wilson, 38, tie up a St George's flag with Carlisle United written on it

England fans Jamie Cadenhead, 43, and Jamie Wilson, 38, tie up a St George’s flag with Carlisle United written on it

England fans Ryan and Reece Daffin from Sheffield in the old town securing their England flag to a lamppost

England fans Ryan and Reece Daffin from Sheffield in the old town securing their England flag to a lamppost

Jamie (left) is hoping England finish top of the group to avoid a clash with the old enemy Germany in the last-16

Jamie (left) is hoping England finish top of the group to avoid a clash with the old enemy Germany in the last-16

England flags have been tied on screens that surround the Jan von Werth fountain

England flags have been tied on screens that surround the Jan von Werth fountain 

England fans in the Old Market in Cologne head of the UEFA Euro 2024 Group C match

England fans in the Old Market in Cologne head of the UEFA Euro 2024 Group C match

England's army of support were readying themselves for the Three Lions' final group game

England’s army of support were readying themselves for the Three Lions’ final group game

Supporters hold up a flag adorned with Kettering Town FC as they pose for a snap in the afternoon sun in the centre of Cologne

Supporters hold up a flag adorned with Kettering Town FC as they pose for a snap in the afternoon sun in the centre of Cologne

A Three Lions supporter drapes an England flag over his shoulders while other fans stand shirtless

A Three Lions supporter drapes an England flag over his shoulders while other fans stand shirtless 

An England fan showed his love for Gareth Southgate's side with a St George's cross inside a heart painted on his cheek

An England fan showed his love for Gareth Southgate’s side with a St George’s cross inside a heart painted on his cheek

Fans appeared in a relaxed mood as they stood around and swigged beer ahead of the Group C clash

Fans appeared in a relaxed mood as they stood around and swigged beer ahead of the Group C clash 

West Ham fan Corral Blundell, 63, from Newport Pagnall, said: ‘It’s a lovely day and the atmosphere is just brilliant.’

Her partner Simon Davies, 64, raised his beer glass and added: ‘This is to Harry Kane and the team. We are right behind them.’

England fans drank into the early hours, but police reported no trouble or arrests.

Helen Gaffey, who was wearing a white England shirt, said: ‘We all love the warmth but I hope the players can deal with it and the Slovenian team too. We need to win this cup and win it in style.’

Tens of thousands of supporters have descended on the west German city and headed straight to the bars to sample its famous kolsch. 

The cold ale – which originated in the 2,000-year-old city – is traditionally served in 200ml glasses, nearly the third the size of a UK pint glass. 

Some England fans have bemoaned the smaller vessels as ‘it’s gone in three sips’.

But the measly portions aren’t dampening spirits ahead of tonight’s Euro clash at the Cologne Stadium at 8pm, with Gareth Southgate’s men having already safely secured their spot in the last-16 after Albania’s 1-0 defeat against Spain last night. 

England fans are full of hope the Three Lions will triumph against Slovenia tonight in Cologne - despite being left disappointed by the city's famous 'champagne flute-style' beer glasses

England fans are full of hope the Three Lions will triumph against Slovenia tonight in Cologne – despite being left disappointed by the city’s famous ‘champagne flute-style’ beer glasses

England fans hold up a St George's flag in front of Cologne Cathedral

England fans hold up a St George’s flag in front of Cologne Cathedral

But the measly portions aren't dampening spirits ahead of tonight's Euro clash at the Cologne Stadium at 8pm, with Gareth Southgate 's men having already safely secured their spot in the last-16

But the measly portions aren’t dampening spirits ahead of tonight’s Euro clash at the Cologne Stadium at 8pm, with Gareth Southgate ‘s men having already safely secured their spot in the last-16

Three Lions supporters drank lagers and went through their full repertoire of football anthems, including ‘Don’t take me home’ and ‘Sweet Caroline’ in the picturesque squares of the city’s Alter Markt. 

Londoners Daniel Burton and Liam Terrington – both aged 23 – were two of the English fans sampling the kolsch who were left unimpressed by the glass sizes. 

What is kolsch and why is it served in smaller glasses? 

By German law, Kolsch beer can be brewed only in Cologne.

A notably fruity, light ale, it’s pretty much the only draft beer you’ll find in the city. 

The Cologne Brewery Association, also known as the Kolsch Konvention, ensure that kolsch is brewed according to a particular recipe.

The beer is traditionally served in 200ml glasses known as a Stange within the city’s famous beer halls to ensure it remains cool and carbonated.

‘It’s alright but it’s gone in three sips – you could even shot it,’ Mr Burton told The Telegraph. 

Mr Terrington said he would prefer a ‘normal serving’ as he added: ‘It is a shock, we are ordering more rounds quicker.’

Pierre Hazel, 52, a marketing director, from Brighton and his two sons Alex, 21, a student, and Felix, 19, weren’t too bothered about the ‘small’ glasses as they thought it was nice drinking it slower in the scorching heat. 

Mr Hazel said: ‘If you’ve got a big litre in this heat by the time you get halfway through it’s all warm – but this is fresh and cold.’  

It appears any fears of an alcohol shortage have been put to bed after warnings were sounded that a cellars in a number of bars and pubs in the city were left empty after Scotland’s clash with Switzerland last week, according to The Sun.

A manager at an Irish bar in the city revealed the Tartan Army had polished off their entire supply.

‘The Scotland fans drank everything – beer, Guinness and vodka,’ he said. ‘Our cellar was emptied.

‘It was the same at other bars, with record beer sales – even more than carnival.’

‘Now we’re all now trying to get more deliveries from breweries to get drinks for England fans.’

England fans could be seen waving their arms and dancing in Cologne as they went through their full repertoire of songs

England fans could be seen waving their arms and dancing in Cologne as they went through their full repertoire of songs

England fans get ready to cheer their team on tonight in their final Euros group game

England fans get ready to cheer their team on tonight in their final Euros group game

Hundreds of fanatics join a sing-along in the German city

Hundreds of fanatics join a sing-along in the German city 

England fans build up the pre-match atmosphere in Cologne as the Three Lions prepare to face Slovenia

England fans build up the pre-match atmosphere in Cologne as the Three Lions prepare to face Slovenia

Three Lions supporters pose ahead of the historic Cologne Cathedral

Three Lions supporters pose ahead of the historic Cologne Cathedral

England fans dressed in replica shirts gather in Cologne ahead of the final group match against Slovenia on Tuesday night

England fans dressed in replica shirts gather in Cologne ahead of the final group match against Slovenia on Tuesday night

Meanwhile a staff member at a neighbouring establishment revealed they too are frantically attempting to restock for the incoming England supporters.

‘The Scotland fans showed us how much they could drink,’ they added.

‘Our supplies are low and we need more beer so the England fans don’t miss out.’

Some England fanatics were joined on Sunday night by a group of Slovenians in celebrating the end of Scotland’s Euro journey after the Tartan Army lost 1-0 to Hungary.

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The two sets of football fans belted out the chants ‘Scotland’s going home and England’s on the p***’ as well as ‘Scotland go home’ in jubilant scenes after the Auld Enemy suffered another early tournament exit.

Yesterday, England supporters downed pints in the blazing Cologne sunshine which shone on the many bars and restaurants lining the pleasant old quarter of the city.

While the scenes in the city remained largely good-natured during a day where thousands of fans descended on pubs and drank litres of beer, some fans provided a sour note by chanting unsavoury songs.

A rendition of ‘Ten German Bombers’ could be heard on the streets while a couple of fans waved a World War II-era RAF plane.

Three Lions supporters have been warned by German police not to sing the song with a clear message: ‘Don’t be a d***!’

There are fears that it could be frequently heard at the Euros and despite the warning of German authorities, they are powerless to stop it. 

The England side have faced criticism from supporters and ex-players after a dismal 1-1 draw to Denmark on Thursday.

Gary Lineker was one of several prominent media figures to slam the showing, branding the performance ‘s***’ on The Rest is Football, a podcast he hosts and owns through his Goalhanger production company.

England fans have gathered in Cologne ahead of tonight's game against Slovenia

England fans have gathered in Cologne ahead of tonight’s game against Slovenia

Bosses are expecting a wave of workers to call in sick tomorrow, as the heatwave coincides with England's final Euros group-stage game

Bosses are expecting a wave of workers to call in sick tomorrow, as the heatwave coincides with England’s final Euros group-stage game

The weather is expected to be the hottest day of the year as the Lions take on Slovenia today at 8pm in Cologne

The weather is expected to be the hottest day of the year as the Lions take on Slovenia today at 8pm in Cologne

Speaking ahead of England’s final group game against Slovenia, captain Harry Kane hit back and insisted former England players should think twice before commenting on the team.

The England captain also suggested an ulterior motive behind some of the negative reaction, with members of the media using it to ‘promote their own channels’ because they ‘want the most views’.

Tonight’s clash has got bosses on high alert for a wave of workers calling in sick , as the heatwave coincides with England’s final Euros group-stage game.

HR experts said the likelihood of people calling in sick was far higher with today’s temperatures set to be the highest recorded this year. 

‘Generally, most people are sensible, I would say, but obviously you can’t control everyone, so especially if it’s the hottest day of the year, then it wouldn’t surprise me if some people decide to take a day off’, Farzana Parkar, founder of Face2FaceHR, told the Guardian.

It comes as health warnings were activated across England today as summer finally arrived with the first heatwave of the year and temperatures soaring to 31C (88F) this week.

The yellow heat health alert was issued by the UK Health Security Agency and Met Office for most of England, with all but the North East included in the warning.

The alert came into force this morning as forecasters said the country would see mostly dry weather with ‘plenty of sunny spells’ and a maximum of 28C (82F).

Hot weather will build throughout this week with Wednesday likely to hit 30C (86F) and Thursday getting to 31C (88F) – before the health alert expires that afternoon.

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