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Manchester United and England captain Wayne Rooney has said that Tuesday’s friendly against France is a stand against terror.
After the terror attacks in Paris last Friday, it was unsure that the friendly between England and France at Wembley Stadium would take place. Officials decided to play the game with heightened security.
Wayne Rooney and his teammates watch the attacks develop on tv in a hotel in Spain after England’s loss to Spain in Alicante. He immediately tried to reach out to teammates and friends that were in the area.
“It was shocking, sickening, hard to watch,” Rooney told The Guardian. “We knew, watching it all unfold, that there would be a chance the game might not be on. We were happy to do whatever was decided, either way, but I’m pleased the game’s on.
“Playing it shows France is demonstrating to the terrorists that they’re standing strong against them, and we have to support that. Sometimes, when bad things happen, football is the place where you feel most comfortable. Their players might be taking that into consideration. This will be a great night of togetherness for everyone to see. It will show the terrorists that the world will go on and stand against them.”
The English FA talked extensively with their French counterpart (FFF) over the weekend and it was decided that the game would be play as scheduled.
“I’m not surprised, given the way London reacted to 7/7,” said the FA’s chief executive, Martin Glenn. “When all liberal democracies are attacked in this way, they want to react by triumphing over terror, so I’m not surprised the French wanted the game to go ahead as planned.”