A fundraiser collecting money for a young German fan seen crying during last week’s Euro 2020 defeat to England has reached more than £35,000.
The girl was shown in tears during the television coverage of last Tuesday’s last-16 clash at Wembley and the image quickly became a viral hit, but some social media users shared the picture along with abusive messages.
Fundraiser Joel Hughes initially set up a JustGiving page with the aim of raising £500 to “show this little German supporter that not everyone in the UK is horrible” but it has since rocketed past that target.
JustGiving have since taken over efforts to locate the girl’s family and plan to discuss the possibility of donating the money to charity.
“I saw the vile unchecked abuse being directed at the images of the young girl,” Hughes told Sky News. “And I think it struck a chord, not just in terms of the vileness of the online abuse, but also the xenophobia, which taps into deeper issues of where Britain is now and how we are perceived on the world stage.
“I thought you know what, I want do try and do something here, however small it might be.”