THE QUEEN was remembered on Friday night as the Premier League returned.
A minute’s silence in honor of Her Majesty was held at Aston Villa and Nottingham Forest.
Several fans on the City Ground shouted during the tribute.
But their protests were drowned out by applause before fans at Forest and Villa Park sang God Save The King.
The Queen’s image was broadcast on the big screen as a minute’s applause rang out across the two grounds.
As part of the Premier League’s new protocol, no pre-match music was played, while the pre-match handshake was also abandoned.
Players, managers and match officials also wore black armbands – just like English clubs did at European games this week.
Villa Park dove into darkness for the moment of remembrance – Villa’s game program also included a photo of The Queen.
The fans in both stadiums also applauded in the 70th minute on the occasion of Her Majesty’s 70th jubilee and sang the national anthem again.
It was the Villa and Fulham fans who signed after the full-time whistle as Steven Gerrard’s side beat Southampton 1-0.
Meanwhile, a five-goal thriller at the City Ground ended in Fulham’s 3-2 win over Nottingham Forest, despite the Cottagers coming from a goal behind.
Five more Prem games are scheduled to take place this weekend and all will follow the same protocol.
But three games have been postponed, including Manchester United vs Leeds.
Villa boss Gerrard hoped Friday’s win brought some joy to the Prince William fan after revealing the royal had sent a message ahead of the game despite the loss of his grandmother.
An emotional Gerrard revealed William has been in touch, saying: “He’s been messaging the club throughout the week. It was based on the motto: “I would like to be there”.
“But of course everyone understands their personal situation.
“It’s really impressive how much he knows and how committed he is to it. It’s impressive that he’s messaging in the situation he’s in.
“It definitely brought me back and surprised me. He’s very involved in Villa.
“It shows what he thinks about this club and how much he wants to give.
“He’s in touch all the time. He’s very supportive of the boys individually. I spoke to him about them all.
“It was a particularly emotional night. The club did an extremely good job of paying tribute to us.
“Singing the song makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. It felt special, I was proud. I remembered my days in England – the MBE and meeting the Queen.
“I went back to my personal engagements with the royal family.
“So from a personal point of view it was something very special and credit to the club that they put on a wonderful show before the game. I found it very fitting.
“Hopefully we rewarded that with a goal and a win. I’m sure he’ll be very proud.”
https://www.the-sun.com/sport/6241369/premier-league-queen-nottingham-forest-aston-villa/ The Premier League pays tribute to the Queen as action returns on Friday night, but a minority of Forest fans break the silence