England captain Wayne Rooney and his players are organising a special tribute to the 129 people who died in the Paris atrocities ahead of the soccer friendly against France at Wembley on Tuesday. As the Daily Telegraph’s Chief Football Correspondent Jason Burt reports, he Football Association has confirmed that the words of the French national anthem La Marseillaise will be shown on the big screens inside the stadium with all the supporters, officials and players encouraged to sing. The French Football Federation confirmed that all 23 players in its squad would travel to London for the match following suggestions that some players might withdraw because of the horrific events of Friday night, when both France and Germany players stayed inside the stadium into the early hours of Saturday for fear of attack.
The squad includes Lassana Diarra, the former Portsmouth, Arsenal and Chelsea midfielder, whose cousin Asta Diakite was one of the victims in the terror attacks, and Antoine Griezmann, whose sister escaped from the Bataclan theatre where 89 people were killed when it was stormed by terrorists. Both Diarra and Griezmann played against Germany in the 2-0 friendly victory at Stade de France, which was also targeted.
This story first appeared in the blog, The Sport Intern. The editor is Karl-Heinz Huba of Lorsch, Germany. He can be reached at ISMG@aol.com. The article is reprinted here with permission of Huba.