England captain Wayne Rooney and manager Roy Hodgson on Monday pleaded with the country’s fans to avoid further violence to head off a UEFA threat to disqualify the team from Euro 2016.
“I’m appealing to you to stay out of trouble,” Hodgson said in a video message. “We really desperately want to stay in the competition.”
Rooney told fans: “Be safe, be sensible and continue with your great support for the players.”
After violence erupted in Marseille over the weekend, overshadowing England’s 1-1 draw with Russia, European governing body UEFA threatened to kick both teams out of the tournament if the disorder continued.
It also said both countries must make an appeal to their fans not to cause unrest.
England play rivals Wales in the northern French city of Lens on Thursday and Russian fans will also be in the area as their team face Slovakia in nearby Lille a day earlier.
In a video message posted on the English Football Association’s Twitter feed, Hodgson said: “As England manager I’m obviously very concerned about the threat which is now hanging over us and the sanctions that could possibly be imposed upon the England team.
“We worked very hard to get here and we really desperately want to stay in the competition. I’m appealing therefore to all of our fans.
“We appreciate your support at all our matches, of course, but I’m appealing to you to stay out of trouble and to try and make certain that these threats that are being issued are never carried out.”
Following Hodgson, Rooney said: “I’d like to thank the England fans for the great support inside the stadium against Russia and now we have a big game coming up against Wales.
“I’d like to ask the fans, please, if you don’t have a ticket, don’t travel, and for the fans with tickets, be safe, be sensible, and continue with your great support for the players. Thank you.”