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England v Scotland: Ipswich couple divided by loyalties say Euro 2020 game at Wembley is 'blessing and curse'

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One Suffolk couple divided by England-Scotland loyalties will enter unfamiliar territory tomorrow when their sides meet in a major tournament for the first time in 25 years.

The teams will go head to head in their Euro 2020 Group D clash at Wembley, with one England fan – married to a Scotland fan – describing the game as 'a blessing and a curse'.

Football’s oldest international rivalry will pit club colleagues against one another, but it could also test relationships.

Chris and Laura Millen. Picture: PA/Chris and Laura Millen
Chris and Laura Millen. Picture: PA/Chris and Laura Millen

Chris Millen, 37, from Livingston, and his wife Laura Millen, 38, from Mansfield, live in Ipswich and will be watching the game together.

“(I’m) really excited because this is the first time competitively in my adult life Scotland will play in an actual tournament,” Chris told the PA news agency.

“For them to be drawn against England … yeah, it’s a kind of surreal feeling. I don’t think I’ll properly know how to feel or react until tomorrow.”

Chris and Laura Millen. Picture: PA/Chris and Laura Millen
Chris and Laura Millen. Picture: PA/Chris and Laura Millen

Laura added: “It’s a blessing and a curse because obviously I support Scotland unless they’re playing England – to hit each other in the group stages is quite interesting.

“We met in Scotland. So I’ve always been a big advocate for Scotland to qualify into a tournament.”

Laura described the mood as a “friendly rivalry at the moment”, adding “we’ll see on Friday”, while Chris said his wife has not missed the chance to mention Scotland goalkeeper David Marshall’s role in the Czech Republic’s wonder-goal on Monday.

“Laura has been very, very strong on the David Marshall memes to me, very strong,” he said of the memes showing Marshall falling into the net. “But that’s to be expected.”

The Nottingham Forest fans, who met during Euro 2004 at a nightclub, will watch the game together at a local social club, where Chris is expecting to be the only Scotland supporter.

“I imagine I’ll be the only one,” he said. “So once the scoreline comes in, which I expect – not hope – I expect England to romp home, I think for the hour after that I’ll take a faint ribbing.”

“But obviously you’re going to turn up in your Scotland top regardless?” asked Laura.

“Oh yeah, I’ll be there, Braveheart, everything, the flag… if I had face paint that’d be on!” said Chris.

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