DAILY MAIL 🔵 England disappoint children by only opening up training to 500 fans – Shango Media
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DAILY MAIL 🔵 England disappoint children by only opening up training to 500 fans

  • Gareth Southgate’s England stars trained in front of 500 spectators on Tuesday
  • The same venue saw 15,000 spectators watch Germany train two weeks ago
  • Click here to follow Mail Sport’s Euro 2024 WhatsApp Channel for all the latest breaking news and updates from Germany 

Thousands of local children were left disappointed after England’s training session was only opened to 500 fans.

Two weeks ago Germany held a similar practice at the same venue to which 15,000 packed the stand. And officials from FC Carl Zeiss Jena wanted a repeat when Gareth Southgate and his stars were put through their paces on Tuesday.

With Harry Kane the main attraction after joining Bayern Munich and Jude Bellingham now one of the most famous players in Europe, they were confident that England could also pull a capacity crowd.

However, just 500 – the minimum requirement for a mandatory UEFA open training session – were allowed entry to the redeveloped ad hoc arena. 

The club, which plays in Germany’s fourth tier, have only just put the finishing touches to the £50m venue, which will officially open with a match against Sampdoria. 

England's training session was only opened for 500 supporters at FC Carl Zeiss Jena's stadium

The same venue welcomed 15,000 spectators when Germany's trained two weeks ago

The minimum number of fans for a UEFA open training session, 500, were permitted to attend

They felt the surge in interest in the Three Lions would have meant another 15,000 would have attended on the back of the visit from Julian Nagelsmann’s men, who were previously staying at England’s nearby training base. But their hopes were left dashed when those plans were rejected. 

Instead, just 500 attended, filling a small but noisy pocket in the corner of the stadium. 

For those who were able to get a ticket, Kane, Bellingham and the likes of Bukayo Sako put on a show, with a keenly-competed head tennis competition. 

Many wore Bayern shirts, while chants of ‘Bellingham, Bellingham’ rang out in honour of Real Madrid’s former Borussia Dortmund man. 

To the credit of players and staff, the 26-man group – who appeared to be in high spirits – came over to the fans at the end of the session and signed dozens of autographs. 

England captain Harry Kane was among those to sign autographs for the fans present

Kane was in demand with Bayern Munich fans keen for him to sign their replica shirts

England stars came over at the end of the session and signed dozens of autographs for fans

One Carl Zeiss Jena official bemoaned the move. ‘It was a great pity,’ he said. 

‘We had 15,000 here for Germany and it was like a big festival. 

‘We would have had the same number here for England, but we were told we could have the minimum 500.’ 

An FA spokesman said the event was jointly organised by the club, the FA and UEFA and added that the governing body was unaware that there would be such a huge demand locally. 

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