PARIS (AP) — The Latest from soccer’s European Championship (all times local):
Marseille prosecutor Brice Robin says he is investigating the cases of two severely injured English fans as attempted murder.
The two, whom Robin did not name, were injured during clashes between rival fans ahead of Saturday’s 1-1 draw between Russia and England at the European Championship.
Robin says he has extended an initial investigation into the cases, which “I qualify as attempted murder.”
Robin adds that the prison sentences given to three Russian fans Thursday send a strong message to hooligans who had planned to stage a “Tour de France of violence” at Euro 2016.
Play was briefly suspended in the 58th minute of the match in Lyon because of hail. The players came back on after a very short break. Northern Ireland leads Ukraine 1-0.
Northern Ireland defender Gareth McAuley headed in a free kick from Oliver Norwood at the far post in the 49th minute to give his side a 1-0 lead against Ukraine.
Northern Ireland dominated the latter stages of the first half, but was denied a breakthrough goal.
GOAL: Gareth McAuley scores for Northern Ireland in the 49th minute. Northern Ireland leads Ukraine 1-0.
Northern Ireland and Ukraine are scoreless at halftime in their Group C match in Lyon.
Northern Ireland coach Michael O’Neill got what he was looking for after making five changes to the side that failed to get a shot on goal in its opening 1-0 loss to Poland.
His team’s first shot on target at the tournament came just four minutes into the match, when new addition Stuart Dallas fired into the arms of goalkeeper Andriy Pyatov.
The best chance created by either side came 10 minutes before halftime when Northern Ireland defender Craig Cathcart rose near the penalty spot to meet a corner with a header that flew just by the post.
Other than a long strike by Yaroslav Rakitskiy that was easily saved by Michael McGovern, Ukraine’s only threat was a cross from Andriy Yarmolenko that striker Yevhen Seleznyov just missed getting his head on.
Northern Ireland’s players are wearing black armbands in their game against Ukraine and their fans have dedicated a round of applause to pay their respects to a fellow supporter who died following the team’s loss to Poland on Sunday.
The 24-year-old Darren Rodgers died after a fall, which was not related to the hooligan violence that has plagued the European Championship.
Delirious scenes in Lille where England fans are celebrating their team’s 2-1 victory over Wales by dancing in fountains and singing their hearts out.
A boisterous, beery crowd about 8,000 strong watched the match in nearby Lens via a giant screen in the Lille fan zone.
Watch here how they showered themselves with beer when England equalized and again with Daniel Sturridge’s late winner
Needing a win against Ukraine, Northern Ireland coach Michael O’Neill has made five changes to the side that failed to produce a shot on goal in an opening 1-0 loss to Poland in Group C.
His biggest move is entrusting his attack to Conor Washington in place of Kyle Lafferty.
Midfielders Jamie Ward, Stuart Dallas and Corry Evans will also start instead of Chris Baird, Paddy McNair, and Shane Ferguson. Aaron Hughes will get his 101st cap in defense, sending Conor McLaughlin to the bench.
Also looking to spark an attack that failed to score in a 2-0 loss to Germany, Ukraine coach Mykhailo Fomenko has given start to Yevhen Seleznyov up front in place of Roman Zozulya. Seleznyov went on as a substitute against Germany.
Here are the lineups for the Group C match between Ukraine and Northern Ireland at Stade de Lyon:
Ukraine: Andriy Pyatov, Artem Fedetskiy, Yevhen Khacheridi, Yaroslav Rakitskiy, Vyacheslav Shevchuk, Serhiy Sydorchuk, Taras Stepanenko, Andriy Yarmolenko, Viktor Kovalenko, Yevhen Konoplyanka, Yevhen Seleznyov.
Northern Ireland: Michael McGovern, Aaron Hughes, Craig Cathcart, Gareth McAuley, Jonny Evans, Stuart Dallas, Oliver Norwood, Steven Davis, Corry Evans, Jamie Ward, Conor Washington.
Daniel Sturridge scored an injury-time winner as England came from behind to beat Wales 2-1 at the European Championship.
Sturridge scored the winning goal in the first minute of stoppage time, putting England at the top of Group B.
Jamie Vardy also scored for England, pouncing on a defensive mistake to equalize in the 56th minute.
Both Vardy and Sturridge came on as substitutes in the second half.
Gareth Bale had given Wales the lead from a free kick in the 42nd minute.
GOAL: Daniel Sturridge scores for England in stoppage time. England leads Wales 2-1.
Three Russian soccer fans have been given prison terms for their part in violence ahead of Saturday’s European Championship game between England and Russia.
A French court sentenced Alexei Erunov, Sergei Gorbachev and Nikolai Morozov to two years, 18 months and 12 months, respectively.
Halftime substitute Jamie Vardy scored with a volley from short distance, benefitting from Ashley Williams’ misdirected headed clearance.
Vardy came on for Harry Kane.
England and Wales are tied 1-1.
GOAL: Jamie Vardy scores for England in the 56th minute. England and Wales are tied 1-1.
Gareth Bale scored his second free kick of the European Championship to give Wales a 1-0 halftime lead over England in Lens.
The Real Madrid forward had been quiet until he stepped up from about 35 meters and sent in a dipping shot that England goalkeeper Joe Hart couldn’t keep out of the net.
The Welsh will qualify with a first win over their big rival since 1984. Wales beat Slovakia 2-1 on Saturday, when Bale also scored a free kick.
England had the better of the chances up until then, with Raheem Sterling side-footing over in the seventh minute and Gary Cahill heading at goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey from six meters.
England drew 1-1 with Russia in its opening game.
Gareth Bale sent a long free kick past England goalkeeper Joe Hart to give Wales a 1-0 lead over England at the European Championship.
The shot was almost a copy off Bale’s opening goal in Wales’ 2-1 win over Slovakia.
GOAL: Gareth Bale scores for Wales in the 42nd minute. Wales leads England 1-0.
With the weather clearing up, English and Welsh fans enjoyed some glimpses of sunshine as they gathered peacefully at the Stade Bollaert-Delelis in the final hour before kickoff.
Inside the stadium, the stands were colored white and red, and fans were singing while both teams warmed up.
Outside, many supporters were having a drink together and taking pictures while listening to the rhythm of a drum band.
A dozen national police officers, dressed in blue track suits, were standing aside and watching the scene with their arms folded, while a helicopter was circling above the stadium.
Thousands of England and Wales fans have packed a fan zone in Lille to watch their teams play in nearby Lens.
The sun is out and the beer tents are doing a roaring trade, offering an upbeat mood after scattered crowd trouble on Wednesday.
Here’s a photo: https://twitter.com/johnleicester/status/743423296864157696
England selected an unchanged team against Wales, with captain Wayne Rooney again starting in midfield and coach Roy Hodgson leaving Jamie Vardy on the bench.
Wales brought back goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey following a back injury, and also recalled midfielder Joe Ledley and striker Hal Robson-Kanu in place of Jonny Williams and Dave Edwards.
Robson-Kanu, who scored Wales’ winner against Slovakia on Saturday, will start as a lone striker, allowing Gareth Bale to have a roving role behind him. Ledley makes his comeback after a broken leg.
Wales will qualify, as Group B winner, with a victory. England opened with a 1-1 draw against Russia.
Here are the lineups for Thursday’s Group B match between England and Wales in Lens:
England: Joe Hart, Kyle Walker, Danny Rose, Gary Cahill, Chris Smalling, Eric Dier, Adam Lallana, Wayne Rooney, Dele Alli, Raheem Sterling, Harry Kane.
Wales: Wayne Hennessey, Chris Gunter, Neil Taylor, Ben Davies, Ashley Williams, James Chester, Joe Ledley, Joe Allen, Aaron Ramsey, Gareth Bale, Hal Robson-Kanu.
Each of the 15 games at the European Championship has produced at least one goal.
That record, following an exhilarating start to the 2014 World Cup, indicates tournaments are shedding their old reputation of teams being too cautious at the start.
Still, there is a long way to go to beat the goal-scoring feats of Euro 2012.
Four years ago, in Poland and Ukraine, the first 27 games in a 31-match program all delivered the goal-scoring goods.
The first scoreless game was Italy’s penalty shootout victory over England in Kiev, the final quarterfinal match.
The goal-free games came quicker at previous European Championships. In 2008, the fifth game — France-Romania — was scoreless. Four years previously, the first 0-0 game came as soon as the third match when Switzerland played Croatia.
Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama has issued a public letter of thanks to the national soccer team despite its two losses at the European Championship.
Albania has lost to host France and Switzerland at the tournament.
Rama says “I want to thank you today with the greatest gratitude for what you showed last night, in our first finals in history, where Albania is because of you.”
He says “if you continue to play like last night for sure you will fully get what you deserve in the minds and hearts of the Albanian people.”
Albania plays its last Group A match against Romania on Sunday in Lyon.
French officials say 20 Russian men will be deported for their role in violence at the European Championship.
Stephane Bouillon, prefect for the region including Marseille, where the violence occurred last week, says the unnamed men will be deported Monday.
They are suspected of “participation in skirmishes linked to the England-Russia game on June 11 in Marseille.”
They are currently being held in a detention center.
The men were among 43 Russian fans detained Tuesday after their bus was stopped by French police near the town of Mandelieu in a check for hooligans.
French authorities say scattered unrest in Lille “was provoked essentially by British citizens in a drunken state, obliging police to intervene to disperse them.”
The statement says there were no fights of note between English and Russian fans, as had been feared.
The statement says police used tear gas on two occasions to disperse groups of several hundred people. However, The Associated Press also saw police spraying gas in other incidents in Lille on Wednesday.
Police detained 37 people. Of those, only 15 were kept in custody. Most of the others were for public drunkenness.
The normally quiet center of Lens has turned into a big party as England and Wales soccer fans converge on the smallest host city of the European Championship.
Fearing the kind of disorder from drunken fans that took place in nearby Lille late Wednesday and in Marseille last week, the sale of alcohol was strictly regulated and limited to beer. Some stores selling alcohol remained closed, while others put on display announcements about the ban.
Three hours before kickoff, fans were mingling freely in the rain and under gloomy skies — typically British weather for an all-British match.
Supporters without tickets were patiently waiting in a long line to get into the fan zone located in the town center, in front of a church.
Security was heavy, especially at the train station with many fans arriving on trains from Lille.
Two supporters watching France play Albania in a fan zone in the city of Lyon have been slightly injured following a scuffle involving fans from three nations.
Local authorities in Lyon said the altercation broke up Wednesday evening after French supporters started to sing France’s national anthem, “La Marseillaise.” They were confronted by a group of Albania fans, leading police to intervene inside the fan zone.
Privately-hired security agents are normally in charge of security inside the fan zones at Euro 2016, with French authorities dealing with it outside.
Lyon prefecture’s press office said the two fans injured are a Belgian and a Frenchman, “who sustained wounds to their thigh and bottom.” Police did not find the weapon used by the attacker.
In a separate incident, police arrested a supporter who smuggled a flare inside the open-air space set up in downtown Lyon.
The fan zone will be open on Thursday but the Lyon prefect will meet with the company in charge of its security and UEFA officials to strengthen safety.
It’s beer for breakfast for England’s seemingly indefatigable fans, who are downing pints in the rain in Lille before the team’s match against Wales in nearby Lens later Thursday.
A boisterous crowd a couple of hundred people have picked up where they left off, singing “England ‘til I die” and other songs at the “The 3 Brewers” pub opposite the Flanders train station.
But unlike the previous night, when French riot police charged groups of fans and sprayed tear gas, the mood is good-humored.
Long lines have formed in the station of fans waiting to board trains to the match.
UEFA says England’s participation in the European Championship is under no immediate threat despite a fresh outbreak of fan violence.
UEFA said after disorder in Marseille last week that England — along with Russia — faced potential disqualification if there was more violence away from stadiums.
In Lille on Wednesday, French police used tear gas to disperse rampaging England fans. It was the fourth time England fans have been involved in violent incidents since the start of the tournament.
UEFA says it “regrets the skirmishes which occurred in Lille last night. Police forces made several arrests and were quick to restore order and keep the situation under control.”
But there are no plans for an emergency meeting of UEFA’s executive committee to discuss any further warning or sanctions.