English football has a drink problem. At the national level, it affects thousands of match-goers, most of them from the outer boroughs of our towns and cities, who even before games kick off have been transformed into drunken, hate-filled louts.
I watched the England game last night on French television and was dismayed when a large section of the fans booed the Italian national anthem, just as they had the anthems of Germany and Denmark. That was bad enough, but par for the course. What I didn’t know was that outside the ground the police and stewards were struggling to contain a drink-fueled mob that was determined to get in without tickets and didn’t care who they hurt in the process.