FOOTBALL fans in Bournemouth were determined England would win their first match of the Euro 2020. 

Thanks to a cracking goal from Raheem Sterling the Three Lions took home victory in their opening match of the UEFA European Football Championship 2020.

Fans gathered in one of Bournemouth's most-loved sports bars, Sharkeys, to watch the game today, Sunday, June 13.

READ MORE: Raheem Sterling fires England to Euro 2020 victory over Croatia at Wembley

READ MORE: Euro 2020 quiz: test your knowledge of the football tournament

After postponing the games last year due to the coronavirus pandemic, fans were absolutely delighted to be back in the pub watching the football. 

Bournemouth Echo:

Zac Eyre (left) and pals in Sharkey's watching the match.

Rod Cake, owner of Shakeys on Old Christchurch Road said: "I'm absolutely over the moon to have people back in and watching the match - it's what we're all about. 

"We are really excited and hoping England are going to bring it home this time and go on to win the Euros!" 

Before the game had even started, fans in Sharkeys were determined England would bring it home.

With a 360-degree view of the game, thanks to their 60 television screens, Sharkeys was an absolute buzz of energy in the lead up to the match.

Zac Eyre, a plasterer from Bournemouth, said: "It's great to be back, I've missed coming to the pub and watching the football.

"I'm a massive football fan, this is my life and I'm buzzing that the Euros are back on!"

Anand Jassal a finance analyst for Sky, said: "I was devastated when the Euros were cancelled so I'm super-excited that they're back on and we're able to watch it with friends. 

"Rashford's my favourite player, he's a class guy on and off the pitch - I don't see why can't we win?"

Bournemouth Echo:

The lads back out together watching the football after lockdown 

A mix of tension and giddy excitement filled the bar as the England team walked out onto the pitch at Wembley.

There were boos as the Croatians walked onto the pitch, but resounding cheers as the England team were showed walking onto the pitch at Wembley. 

And many of those who spoke to the Daily Echo predicted - with nervous optimism - that football really was coming home.

Chris Filer, a courier from Bournemouth, said: "It's great being back in the pub with the lads again and the Euros are what everyone's needed after lockdown.

"We'll go all the way - it will be France 4-0 in the final"

Singing, chanting and laughter filled the crowd in Sharkeys throughout the game with 'It's Coming Home' being the favourite song of the match. 

England shone during that encouraging opening 20 minutes, only for Croatia to settle and take the sting out of a sharp attack that continued to underwhelm early in the second half.

The Three Lions had never previously won their opening game at a European Championship and, just as fans began to worry that run might continue, a moment of incision cut the visitors’ backline open.

The impressive Kalvin Phillips cut inside and smartly put through Sterling to smash home his first tournament goal as fans celebrated a Three Lions strike at Wembley for the first time since November 2019.

England had to dig deep and contain Croatia until the end but they held on for the narrow victory, with Southgate’s delight clear after a late miss for the visitors was followed by the final whistle.

Bournemouth Echo:

Jamie Virabi (left) supporting England with his friends in Sharkeys.

One punter had travelled down from Henley-on-Thames to watch the match in Sharkeys, Matt Eggleton said: "I'm glad to be back in the pub, it's been amazing to be in the atmosphere again. 

"I think we can go all the way or atleast make the semi-finals."

One fan believing in England every step of the way was Jamie Virabi, an accountant from Bournemouth, said: "I'm absolutely loving it, it's brilliant to be back in the pub after lockdown."

With unwavering faith in the Three Lions, he added: "We are 100 per-cent going to win the Euros!"