2010 World Cup - No arrests despite England dismay

Image caption,
Some fans headed straight to their hotels after the disappointing draw

No England fans were arrested after Friday's match with Algeria, despite the 25,000-strong following being left furious at their team's showing.

UK police in the country praised their reaction to the 0-0 draw in Cape Town, describing them as "extremely well behaved", even when drinking.

Many fans booed England from the pitch, prompting an angry response from star Wayne Rooney - who later apologised.

And one fan managed to breach security to get into the players' dressing room.

He was escorted out after exchanging "a few verbals" and the Football Association has since complained about the breach.

But the atmosphere outside the stadium, which had seen England fans singing and dancing with rival fans in the build-up to the game, remained cordial afterwards.

Ch Supt Dave Lewis said it was "refreshing" to see some England supporters congratulating the Algerians, many of whom were celebrating the surprise draw.

"Considering the number of supporters that were there I think they have been extremely well behaved," he said.

"The fact that nothing happened, nobody was arrested, and given the amount of ale that was drunk, it was extremely pleasing."

David Beckham, who is among the team's backroom staff, played down the dressing room incident involving the fan.

"There was no scuffle, there was no aggression at all," he said.

Prince William, who had visited the dressing room with Prince Harry shortly after the game, joked that the Royal brothers were at fault for "leaving the door open".

Supporters in South Africa have been warned they will face swift justice in South Africa if they misbehave.

Large numbers of police were in Cape Town on Friday, many at the Waterfront as well as the stadium.

After the match, many fans headed straight back to their hotels in disappointment but others continued partying, while South African officers kept watch.

Supporters, including a large number of expatriates, have paid thousands of pounds for flights, accommodation and tickets.


Ch Supt Lewis said many of the supporters were "well-heeled" and "not your normal England followers".

He said: "It's a different set of supporters than we would normally see."

A contingent of 12 UK police officers is in South Africa, liaising with local authorities and patrolling on and around England match days in case of trouble.

Ch Supt Lewis led a team of six on the ground in Cape Town, including men in uniform and plainclothes "spotters" looking out for potential troublemakers.

The carnival atmosphere had given way to a sombre mood on Saturday, where England flags which had hung from railings and balconies at the Waterfront had been taken down.

Rolls-Royce worker Mark Webster, 51, from Derby, summed up the feelings of many: "It was a disappointing performance. We ran out of ideas."

However, business consultant Mike Corry, 59, from Durham, said he would still be cheering the team on in the next game.

"The passion from fans will still be there but the fans need to be rewarded by the players now," he said.

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