England are the best (well, their fans are)

July 2, 2006

The World Cup Organising Committee (OC) have hailed England fans as the best in the world following a mainly trouble-free tournament in Germany.

There were only a few minor incidents in Gelsenkirchen yesterday - more than 100 drunk English fans were taken into temporary custody after clashing with the police - following England's epic shoot-out defeat to Portugal.

Given the 80.000 English fans in Gelsenkirchen, the figure stands relatively small - and OC spokesperson Gerd Graus confirmed the very positive perception of England supporters throughout the whole tournament.

'The English fans said before the tournament they were the world champions as far as celebrating is concerned and they certainly lived up to his billing,' Graus said.

'It was great to see the celebrations of the thousands of fans who poured into the country. They celebrated football in a very unique way. We have to note the minor incidents but all in all they are pretty much negligible.'

FIFA spokesperson Markus Siegler offered a word of warning.

'In general English fans - fans - are among the best in the world. We know that not only since this World Cup,' he stated.

'They were great fans. And I emphasise fans - they love football and are no troublemakers.

'But 100 troublemakers are still too many.'