England fans revel in 'good vibes' as tense 1-0 win against Serbia sees Three Lions top Euro 2024 group

17 June 2024, 02:30 | Updated: 17 June 2024, 06:55

England fans sang and cheered the night away after they beat Serbia 1-0 in their first Euro 2024 match.

A header by Jude Bellingham put England ahead in the 13th minute, and was the only goal in a tense game for Gareth Southgate's side.

That did not matter for the near 20,000 fans in Gelsenkirchen and millions back in the UK, with pints thrown in the air and flares set off after the final whistle.

Chants of "it's coming home" rang out at Wembley Boxpark - but over in Germany, concerns about potential violence were raised before the match.

A clash between fans outside the arena saw seven Serbian fans arrested prior to kick-off, but local police said most of the day passed "without incident".

'It's all about Jude isn't it?'

Sky News sports correspondent Rob Harris caught up with fans outside the Veltins Arena after the game, who heaped praise on Bellingham, England's man of the match.

While one said the game "could have been better" and England "sat back" after their one goal, he added: "It's all about Jude isn't it. Jude FC."

He then said the tournament has been a good example of "festival football" so far - with fans in good spirits - and that "everybody's been making it out to be worse than it is... It's been really fun so far - good vibes".

As it happened: Fans' delight after Bellingham goal

Another fan leaving the stands said: "It's hard, the first game of the tournament, so I'll take that."

His friend added: "At the end of the day all we have to do is get the three points, bring home the wins, and get through to the knockouts."

Seven arrested after 'bottles thrown'

Sky News saw police swarm a bar in Gelsenkirchen where Serbia fans were drinking ahead of the game.

Rob Harris reported "chairs being flung, tables being thrown and fans running around the corner" - with "a lot of bottles being thrown".

In a statement, German police confirmed they had been informed of a confrontation between Serbian and English football fans.

They added: "Riot police were deployed and separated the two fan camps. They took seven Serbian supporters into custody and filed a criminal complaint for grievous bodily harm.

"There were no further incidents on the way to the arena. There is a lively atmosphere around the stadium."

Gelsenkirchen police later said "during the game and after the game ended, everything in and around the stadium remained quiet" - and both sets of fans left without incident.

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Starmer, Sunak and Davey cheer

Rishi Sunak, Sir Keir Starmer and Sir Ed Davey joined in the celebrations on social media.

The prime minister agreed that Bellingham was "something special", while Angela Rayner posted a photograph with the Labour Party leader and comedians Matt Forde and Jon Richardson.

Sir Ed also shared a snap from the Liberal Democrats election bus.

While Southgate admitted "we didn't keep it quite as well as we need to" in the second half, the win takes England to the top of Group C after Denmark and Slovenia drew.

Next up for Southgate's side is Denmark at 5pm on Thursday in Frankfurt, before the group stage comes to a close for England against Slovenia at 8pm on 25 June.