SPORT
12/06/2012 16:40 BST | Updated 12/06/2012 16:46 BST

Euro 2012: Poland And Russia Match Marred By Pre-Match Crowd Violence In Warsaw

Violent clashes have broken out in Warsaw between Polish and Russian football fans and police ahead of the countries Euro 2012 Group A match.

At least 10 people have been injured in clashes on the capital's streets, some of which were between police and football fans, reports Sky News. At least one person appears to be seriously injured, according to The Associated Press.

Flares, fireworks and stones were thrown between the two sides, with police forcibly removing some football fans after violent scuffles took place. Polish police say 56 people have been arrested, reports the BBC. Around 100 fans from both sides have been involved in the scuffles, reports Sky News.

A march of 5,500 Russian fans through Warsaw streets in celebration of their national day was interrupted by Polish fans shouting anti-Russian chants reports Reuters. Tear gas, rubber bullets and water cannon were used by riot police to contain the violence.

Around 6,000 police were on duty in preparation for a match that many anticipated would be provocative.

The two countries have a long, bitter history during the Cold War and throughout the reigns of Lenin and Stalin and during the Cold War. Dating back to the 1700s Poland has gone through long periods of occupation by Russia, particularly during the Tsarist 19th and early 20th century, causing tension to rocket sky high for the match, which begins at 20.45 local time (18.45 GMT)

In a statement on Monday, the Russian football association said: "We urge all football fans now in Poland to remember that they represent Russia. Please respect yourselves, your country and your team."

The Polish opposition had previously denounced the march, but it has been allowed to proceed by the local authorities.