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England fans descend on Donetsk
The first chant of "En-ger-land" has belted out in Donetsk as the travelling army of Three Lions fans arrived for their opening game of Euro 2012.
Hundreds gathered at a bar opposite a giant statue of Russian revolutionary Vladimir Lenin before making their way to the 50,000-seater Donbass Arena to watch England take on France. The bar did a roaring trade as fans warmed up their vocals in the glorious sunshine.
A handful of British police officers were on patrol, while their Ukrainian counterparts kept watch from across the road as flags of St George were hung from a marquee.
An off-duty British policeman was attacked on his way to the stadium. Pc David Heasman, 45, from Norfolk Police, was punched and kicked by a group of four men claiming to be the "Russian mafia".
He received a cut to the ear but did not require hospital treatment. The married father of two said: "I feel upset because it's been a nice atmosphere until now. The police are out in force but they're not there when you need them. They're just standing on show on street corners."
Joe Storey, 56, from Darlington, did not think the stifling heat would put England at a disadvantage: "Professional footballers can play in anything," he said.
Some supporters proved their dedication by enduring a sweltering 13-hour overnight train journey from the capital Kiev. Others enjoyed more comfort, with hundreds arriving in the industrial city of Donetsk by charter flights.
The number of travelling England fans will be the lowest at a tournament for many years, with around 3,000 tickets sold through the official supporters' club for the team's opening game. But the lack of demand meant that fans in Donetsk were able to buy spare tickets off other supporters without an inflated price.
Dex Marshall, 52, from Uckfield, East Sussex, said: "No-one is paying more than face value. There are plenty of England fans with extra tickets that they won't be able to get rid of. I know people who haven't come because their wives and partners were worried by the racism and hooligan stories."
France go into the match as strong favourites after a 21-game unbeaten run, while England are missing Wayne Rooney through suspension and have suffered a number of injuries to key players. The weather could also be a factor, with experts predicting maximum temperatures of 30C (86F).