There have been jubilant scenes on the Champs-Elysees avenue in central Paris on Wednesday as French supporters waved tricolour flags and let off flares to rejoice the win over Morocco that put Les Bleus into the World Cup last.
Some 10,000 police have been mobilised throughout France to make sure there was no unrest throughout and after the match, given the potential of clashes between French supporters and people backing France’s one-time North African colony.
However there was little signal of stress as supporters thronged the top of the avenue resulting in the Arc de Triomphe in impassioned however largely good-natured scenes with Moroccan supporters accepting defeat, AFP correspondents mentioned.
“We’re within the last. We’re within the last,” lots of of French supporters chanted as drivers sounded horns and anti-riot police lurked in vans lining the world.
“What pleasure it will likely be to play Argentina within the last,” mentioned Sylvain Badin, 24, clutching a French flag. “I got here to share a second of pleasure.”
Dozens of Moroccan followers had additionally made themselves heard throughout the match within the space, swathing themselves in nationwide flags as they adopted the match on their telephones.
“We misplaced nevertheless it’s solely soccer and we made historical past by making the semi-finals. We’re happy with our nation and pleased for France,” mentioned Kamal Seddiki, a 22-year-old Moroccan pupil.
There have been 170 arrests nationwide, together with greater than 100 in Paris, when Morocco and France made the semi-finals on the weekend.
However celebrations appeared freed from stress and a French anti-riot police van even used one in all its sirens to mark the second when Kolo Muani scored the objective to offer France a 2-0 lead.
Police did nonetheless transfer to disperse a bunch of followers who have been setting off fireworks across the Arc de Triomphe.
And a bunch of about 40 folks aligned with far-right teams have been arrested for carrying prohibited weapons, a police supply mentioned, as they ready to maneuver in direction of the Champs-Elysees.
“They clearly wished to struggle on the Champs,” the police supply mentioned.
Within the southern metropolis of Good, trash cans have been set on hearth after the sport within the centre of the town the place 1000’s had gathered, an AFP photographer mentioned.
In Lyon, police used tear gasoline when supporters started to let off firecrackers within the central Place Bellecour.
France’s relationship with Morocco isn’t almost as traumatic as with Algeria, one other former colony that fought a bloody seven-year Battle of Independence that scars each nations to today.
However as in any post-colonial relationship, Morocco, which gained independence in 1956, has its grievances with France, most notably over the query of visas.
Greater than one million Moroccans are believed to dwell in France and safety forces had been on alert for any clashes like these in Brussels that marked Morocco’s shock win over Belgium within the group phases.
“We’re pleased for France,” mentioned Hossam Boutalah, 20, with a Moroccan flag on his again within the southwestern metropolis of Bordeaux the place the central sq. was packed for the match.
“We’re brothers in spite of everything, we’re collectively. It’s our second nation. Morocco performed nicely and would have deserved to attain a objective.”
(This story has not been edited by NDTV employees and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
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