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Scenes as Everton fans clash with French police in Lille

Everton fans are seen on one side of Lille square while riot police are on the other. Credit: Voix Du Nord

Bangs can be heard as French riot police fire tear gas at Everton fans in Lille.

The city square, covered in litter, much of which appears to be alcohol containers, is filled with smoke.

An Everton fan is seen throwing what looks like a bottle towards where officers are standing. Credit: Voix Du Nord

One man asks police why they are firing tear gas as there are children around.

Watch a clip of the action below:

Video courtesy of Voix Du Nord.

Tear gas attack on Everton fans was unprovoked, fan says

An Everton fan has told ITV News the French police attack on the team's supporters in Lille was unprovoked.

Ellie Taylor said there was nothing malicious from the Everton side before officers fired rubber bullets and tear gas in the city's main square.

Any trouble has now died down ahead of the 6pm Europa League match.

But Ellie said some of her friends suffered stinging eyes and could not see properly from the tear gas.

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Police 'fire rubber bullets' at Everton fans

Greg O'Keeffe, the Liverpool Echo's Everton correspondent, is on the ground in Lille and has tweeted that police have fired rubber bullets at Toffee fans.

Images appeared on Twitter of Everton supporters having congregated en masse at Lille's Grand Place square, and of the French police then arriving and gas having been set off, with the crowd dispersing.

Everton advise fans to stay away from Lille city centre

Everton have tweeted to ask their fans to stay away from Lille city centre amid reports that police have released tear gas.

Everton issue statement over hooligan attacks in Lille

Everton have issued a statement following the news that fans were left with injuries after being attacked by hooligans in Lille ahead of the Europa League clash tonight.

A statement issued on Everton's official website on Thursday morning said: "The club has been made aware of an isolated incident in a bar in Lille on Wednesday evening in which a number of Evertonians were attacked by a group of around 50 local men.

"The club understands that two Everton fans suffered minor facial injuries and were taken to the local hospital and that this was the only incident in what was otherwise a good-natured evening in the city centre.

"The club are in continual contact with Merseyside police officers who are in Lille today and the city's police representatives.

"Supporters travelling to tonight's match are advised to utilise the travel information provided on the official website where updates on any safety matters will also be provided."

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Everton star donates tickets to unemployed people

Everton striker Steven Naismith is to donate tickets to the club's matches to unemployed people across Liverpool throughout this season.

Steve Naismith has previously helped homeless centres in Glasgow. Credit: Barrington Coombs/EMPICS Sport

The 27-year-old Scotsman, who has already been involved in a number of charitable causes, said he hoped the "small gesture" would "bring some joy to many people".

I come from Ayrshire in the West of Scotland and spent a lot of my life in Glasgow - a city that, at times, has suffered from high unemployment.

Liverpool has a similar history and I am aware that, through no fault of their own, there are many unemployed in Liverpool trying hard to find a job and may not be able to afford a ticket.

– Steven Naismith

The tickets will be made available through JobCentres around the city each week at Naismith's request, selecting people "who are unemployed through no fault of their own, are trying hard to find employment and who would enjoy watching a Premier League football match."

Everton's game against Crystal Palace called off

Everton's Premier League match against Crystal Palace has been called off after building damage caused by high winds.

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