EXTRA police patrols will be on the streets of Hampshire before and after each game England plays in the Euro 2004 tournament which kicks off today.

The move is a bid to prevent alcohol-fuelled fans commiting public order offences.

With many pubs screening England games live, police say bars are likely to be packed as fans congregate to support their team - with alcohol likely to be consumed in larger than usual quantities.

In Winchester Insp Steve France-Sargeant said: "We will be putting in extra resources for this, similar to the World Cup.

"We will be speaking to the pubs where they have the big screens to offer support and also reminding them of their obligations."

Insp Simon Wrigglesworth said that Fareham police will risk- assess every game - not just England matches.

He said: "Throughout Euro 2004 we have contingencies to staff the games and deal with the subsequent difficulties that may arise. We will have more officers on duty. It will not necessarily be just the England games. We will risk-assess every one and take appropriate action."

New Forest police have no special contingencies for the tournament and no extra police are being deployed in Southampton city centre for the crunch game.

However, a team of five officers and a sergeant will be visiting pubs and clubs in the city centre to ensure public safety.

Special public order patrols are to visit pubs across the Eastleigh Command Unit - which stretches from Andover to Hamble - to monitor fans' behaviour and have been tasked to "deal robustly" with anyone committing public order offences.

Licencees have already been written to advise them of the measures to be adopted by the police and what they, themselves, can do to ensure everyone enjoys the tournament.

An Eastleigh police spokesman said: "Every English football fan will want England to do well in the tournament and progress to the final stages. This is clearly evident from the number of vehicles driving around displaying the flag of St George.

"We encourage them to support their team but at the same time be mindful of allowing non-football fans to get on with their lives.

"Our message is quite simple - go out and enjoy yourselves. But should you misbehave, expect to be dealt with appropriately by the police."