Football fans should ‘fight elsewhere’, says Russia striker

Toulouse (France) (AFP) – Russia striker Fedor Smolov has called for a stop to fan violence inside the stadiums of Euro 2016, saying fans should “fight elsewhere”.

Wales face Russia on Monday in a high risk Group B clash the Russians must win to have any chance of qualifying for the last 16 of the tournament.

However, their preparations have been overshadowed by violent clashes in the past week.

“Clearly, these events should not go on in football stands. If people want to go out with the intention of fighting, they should fight elsewhere,” said Smolov on Sunday.

“They shouldn’t do it in the stadium.”

Three Russian fans were handed jail terms by the French authorities last week for their role in attacking England supporters.

On Saturday a group of 20 Russian football fans, including far-right agitator Alexander Shprygin, was deported for their role in organised attacks against England fans in Marseille.

Croatia’s 2-2 draw with the Czech Republic on Friday was also marred by violence between Croatian fans, leading Croatia’s top players like Barcelona’s Ivan Rakitic and even the country’s president to hit out at the violence.

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