• Dozens of fans involved before game with Paris Saint-Germain
• Reports of Nazi salutes in Rue Saint-Denis area
Chelsea fans went on the rampage in a tourist area of central Paris on Wednesday night, making Nazi salutes and smashing up cafes and shops.
Dozens of fans, many of whom had been drinking in the Frog and Rosbif pub on Rue Saint-Denis, were pictured stampeding down a pedestrian street near the celebrated Pompidou Centre and Les Halles shopping centre. Witnesses said several made Nazi salutes and shouted English Defence League chants and racist abuse before attacking Paris Saint-Germain fans.
Bottles were thrown at drinkers who were enjoying a mild evening on the terraces of nearby cafes and were forced to flee as the violence spread. Riot police quickly arrived but a large group of fans ran off towards the river Seine.
Jean‑Philippe d'Halliville, PSG's director of security, said that about 100 fans from each side, including former members of PSG's notorious and now-disbanded Kop of Boulogne hooligan group, fought for up to three minutes.
BFMTV reported that the English hooligans were involved in battles with former PSG ultras in the central Châtelet area, a major underground and district train junction. Two fans were reportedly hurt.
Police said the two sides had been "looking for each other" with a view to causing trouble since Tuesday evening but had been kept apart by the authorities.
The match was attended by the new French sports minister, Najat Vallaud‑Belkacem, who was appointed earlier in the day.
Concerns about possible violence had been raised in the French media earlier this week. The website Spacefoot.com said about 2,200 Chelsea fans were expected, of whom about 300 had been flagged up to police as "potentially dangerous". Scores of known hooligans had reportedly been banned from leaving Britain but several had taken the train from Belgium to avoid Eurostar's security measures.