Mayor of Paris to honour ‘model’ Irish football supporters

Fans from both sides of Border showed ‘exemplary attitude’ during Euro 2016

Irish fans cheer after the  match between France and Ireland at Stade de Lyon in Lyon. France won 2-1. Photograph: EPA

Irish fans cheer after the match between France and Ireland at Stade de Lyon in Lyon. France won 2-1. Photograph: EPA

 

Paris is to honour Irish football supporters, from both the Republic and Northern Ireland, for their behaviour during Euro 2016.

The city’s mayor, Anne Hidalgo, said she would award the fans the “Medal of the City of Paris” in recognition of their “exemplary attitude” during the tournament.

Thanking them for their contribution to the festive atmosphere created over the past fortnight, she called them “a model for the supporters of the world”.

The Paris medal has been awarded periodically since 1911 for “exceptional behaviour”.

Recent recipients include the footballer Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who spent the past four seasons playing for Paris St Germain and who retired from international duty after Sweden’s elimination from the Euros.

His last international game in Paris was the 1-1 draw with the Republic of Ireland, which coincided with several nights of celebration by thousands of Irish supporters on the city’s Boulevard de Clichy.

The scenes attracted some local criticism, but also to much positive coverage in the French media.

Ms Hidalgo has written to both the President of Ireland Michael D Higgins and to Northern Ireland First Minister Arlene Foster, informing them of the award.

The medal is to be presented at a ceremony involving representatives of both teams’ fans, “in the coming days”.