Russian hooligans have warned England fans that they are “100% guaranteed” to be targeted at the 2018 World Cup.
There were scenes of violence at Euro 2016 as supporters of the two countries clashed, with two England fans left in a critical condition after three days of violence in Marseille.
Speaking to a BBC documentary, Russia’s Hooligan Army, a hooligan known as Vasily the Killer was quoted in the Guardian alleging that last year’s violence was sanctioned by the Kremlin.
Vasily, who allegedly organised the trouble in Marseille, said: “They were special military forces of football hooligans sent by Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin to conquer Europe.”
Another hooligan, known as Denis and the leader of the ‘Orel Butchers’ group that was at the centre of the Marseille violence, said tactics honed domestically had given them the upper hand over England fans at Euro 2016.
“There is some street-fight tactics that we obviously exercised a lot of times fighting in cities,” he said.
Speaking of next year’s World Cup, he added: “They can come over and we’ll see.
“Somebody will obviously try to do something, that is like 100% – 100% guaranteed.”
“Have a family and children around you or something … if you are there with your male friend you should calculate on getting your arse kicked.”
Another anonymous hooligan predicted: “For some it will be a festival of football, for others it will be a festival of violence.
“Our opponents are naturally the English because they are the forefathers of hooliganism and naturally they are always awaited.”