Euro 2016: England fans accused of making seven-year-old boy drink beer in exchange for money

The incident was witnessed in the city of Lille where fans have gathered ahead of England vs Wales in Lens

Jack de Menezes@JackdeMenezes
Thursday 16 June 2016 11:50
A young boy was said to have been made to drink beer by England fans in exchange for money
A young boy was said to have been made to drink beer by England fans in exchange for money

England fans have been accused of making a seven-year-old boy drink “a whole beer in exchange for some coins” in the French town of Lille ahead of Thursday’s Euro 2016 match against Wales.

The incident was witnessed by Michael Stothard, the Paris correspondent for the Financial Times, who claimed that a group of England fans would only give the young boy some money if he downed a beer in front of them.

Mr Stothard posted a picture on his Twitter account showing the boy, who could not be identified, and included the caption: “England fans in Lille just got begging 7 year old to down a whole beer in exchange for some coins. #EURO2016.”

Mr Stothard’s tweet attracted mass attention on Twitter, and in replying to one user who asked if he had personally seen the incident, he said: “I saw it, yes. He downed the bottle in five gulps to raucous cheers. Then was handed money. They gave him a cigarette too.

“But he threw the cigarette on the ground and stamped it out. The fans looked disappointed.”

The incident comes a day after British football fans were accused of “taunting begging children” in Lille by throwing money on the floor and making them pick it up.

Video footage showed fans drinking outside a restaurant in the northern French city next to a group of children, with coins being seen and heard landing on the ground.

One eye witness told The Telegraph: "There were eight or nine English who were laughing and joking at these poor youngsters - pretending to give them money and then throwing coins at them.

British fans throw money near group of children.mp4

"These kids must have been no more than eight or nine. It was pretty bad taste."

It has not been confirmed if the fans are English or not.

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