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    HomeNewsHeadlinesSoccer-Dortmund turns orange as Dutch fans stream across the border

    Soccer-Dortmund turns orange as Dutch fans stream across the border


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    DORTMUND, Germany (Reuters) – Netherlands supporters turned Dortmund into a sea of orange on Wednesday in the build-up to the European Championship semi-final with England with an estimated 70,000 crossing the border to cheer on their team and vastly outnumbering rival fans.

    Most do not have match tickets but made the journey to watch the game in one of the city’s two fan parks – causing one to put the “full house” signs up seven hours before kick off.

    No more supporters were being allowed into the Friedenplatz fan park from 1400 local time because it was already too full, Dortmund police said.

    Thousands were jammed into the city centre, on trams on the city’s underground and outside their team’s hotel near the BVB Stadion where the match kicks off at 2100 (1900 GMT).

    Supporters were due to begin the ‘Oranje fan walk’ some five hours before kick off, walking several kilometres from the city to the stadium.

    The walk has been made famous by social media video of fans hopping from one direction to the other in unison to the dance anthem ‘Links Rechts’ — which translates to left, right — by Dutch artist Snollebollekes.

    Traffic at entry points into Germany was backed up, the Dutch automobile association ANWB said, as German police carried out checks.

    At 1230, there was a traffic jam of about 13km on the A12 motorway which runs from The Hague to the border, causing a delay of about an hour, it added. Dortmund is less than 100km from the Dutch border.

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    The Netherlands team were due to fly back to their base at Wolfsburg after the match, irrespective of whether they win or lose, the Dutch FA said.

    They had attempted to travel to Dortmund on Tuesday by train but plans were cancelled after the route was blocked. German television reported later that a train had struck an animal on the tracks causing delays.

    The Dutch squad arrived at their Dortmund base some three hours later than planned on Tuesday evening.

    (Reporting by Mark Gleeson; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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