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French fans sing 'God Save the Queen' in tribute to UK terror attack victims

FRANCK FIFE l AFP England and French players stand together ahead of the international friendly football match between France and England on June 13, 2017.
2 min

Fans at the Stade de France paid an emotional tribute to the victims of the recent terrorist attacks in Manchester and London before a football friendly between France and England on Tuesday.

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The national anthems were reversed in a mark of respect, with "La Marseillaise" played before "God Save the Queen".

The words of "God Save the Queen" were projected on giant screens to help French fans sing along, and the popular sports newspaper L'Equipe had already printed out all the words to encourage their readers to join in with the England fans.

The players from French and English teams then formed a circle at the centre of the pitch and a minute's silence was observed before the game started.

Even before the teams emerged onto the pitch to an electric atmosphere, the Oasis song "Don't Look Back in Anger" rang out and fans held up red and white placards to form the England flag.

The song has become an anthem to the northern British city's spirit and defiance in the wake of the attack in which 22 died, including many children. On Tuesday night, the iconic rock ballad was performed by the musicians and choir of the French Army - as well as enthusiastic French and English fans.

The two horrific attacks in as many weeks in Manchester and London killed 30 people.

Tuesday night's trubute, which has been warmly received in the UK, echoes England fans singing the French anthem before a France vs England friendly in November 2015. This was just four days after a series of deadly terror attacks by Islamist militants in and around the French capital.

Despite England Captain Harry Kane scoring twice, 10-man France beat England 3-2 in the friendly that turned into a thriller.

Below, FRANCE 24's French team had a practise at singing the anthem (with a FRANCE 24 Anglo team journalist keeping score!):

 

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