20,000 ticketless Scotland fans to descend on London despite pleas to stay home


Up to 20,000 ticketless Scotland fans are set to descend on London for the game against England on Friday despite pleas for them to stay at home.

Many members of the Tartan Army plan to make Hyde Park their base, saying they will turn it into Hampden Park.

The excitement is rapidly building ahead of the crucial Euro 2020 group match.

All trains from Glasgow and Edinburgh into London on Friday morning have been sold out and there are very few available tickets for trains leaving on Thursday.

The estimated amount of Scotland fans who will travel to London without tickets ranges from 6,000 to 20,000. Supporters from north of the border have traditionally congregated in Trafalgar Square before clashes with the Auld Enemy.

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Scotland fans ahead of the UEFA Euro 2020 Group D match at Hampden Park, Glasgow, on Monday
Scotland fans ahead of the UEFA Euro 2020 Group D match at Hampden Park, Glasgow, on Monday

But London’s mayor Sadiq Khan has opened a fanzone there which is only for key workers who have tickets to enter.

This has led to a Plan B being put in place by Scotland fans.

They are expected to head to Hyde Park in Central London to meet for drinks before trying to watch the game in nearby bars.

Connor Wilson tweeted: “Just put a big screen up in Hyde Park next Friday and keep us aw happy, doesn’t take much.”

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Stacey C said: “Going to head to Hyde Park and see. We think that’s where most Scotland fans will be. A sort of unofficial fanzone. We’ll go wherever the mayhem is.”

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C. Muir said: “Some pub in Hammersmith for us for the game.

“Our digs are within a couple of miles from there and Hyde Park so shouldn’t be… much hassle manoeuvring around on the day. Plus we were pretty late to book so most pubs around Hyde Park had booked out.”

Police are concerned that due to the match kicking off at 8pm supporters of both teams will already be well oiled even before the game starts. There is relief in some quarters that the weather on Friday afternoon and evening is expected to be awful.



Scottish football fans in the fountains in Trafalgar Square, London, before a match with the 'auld enemy' in 1975
Scottish football fans in the fountains in Trafalgar Square, London, before a match with the ‘auld enemy’ in 1975

Experts predict heavy rain, which usually reduces the chance of trouble.

Sven Lister, a member of the Rosyth Tartan Army supporters’ club, believes there could be ructions if supporters can’t watch the game somewhere on big screens.

He said: “I reckon there will be about 20,000 or so turning out. It just worries me that they’ve not done anything. There’s going to be groups wandering, possibly not getting to see the football, which would cause trouble..”

“They’ve got a party organised in Hyde Park, all they need to do is put a big screen up. They’ll tidy up after themselves.



Scotland fans in Trafalgar Square qw thousands of football fans descend on the capital for the England v Scotland World Cup qualifier in 2016
Scotland fans in Trafalgar Square qw thousands of football fans descend on the capital for the England v Scotland World Cup qualifier in 2016

“There won’t be a case of leaving rubbish around.

“They’ll bring a bin bag and pick it up.” The city’s mayor Mr Khan insisted there would be no big screens erected for the match under any circumstances.

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His spokesman said: “It is not possible to hold a fanzone for Scottish fans in London due to the Covid restrictions.

“Fans should only travel to the capital if they have a ticket or a safe place to watch the match.”

Royal Parks, which manages various London parks, said: “We strongly advise fans not to travel to Hyde Park.

“There is no plan for the use of Hyde Park as a live site for the Euros.

“There are no screens – or any other facilities – for fans to watch games.”

The capacity for the match at Wembley will be around 22,000, with 3,500 of them being Scotland fans.



Scotland fans at the Fan Zone in Glasgow as they watch the UEFA Euro 2020 Group D match between Scotland and the Czech Republic held at Hampden Park on Monday
Scotland fans at the Fan Zone in Glasgow as they watch the UEFA Euro 2020 Group D match between Scotland and the Czech Republic held at Hampden Park on Monday

This will be both nations’ second group game.

England won their first match, but Scotland lost theirs.

There was a carnival atmosphere in London with few reports of trouble when the teams played each other at Wembley in the Euro 96 tournament.





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