Ireland and Northern Ireland honoured in Paris

Supporters of the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland at UEFA EURO 2016 have received a special Paris medal in recognition of their "support and kindness".

Anne Hidalgo

It is coming up to a fortnight since the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland bowed out of UEFA EURO 2016, but fans of both teams were back in Paris on Friday to receive the red-carpet treatment.

Anne Hidalgo, mayor of the French capital, presented the two delegations with the Grand Vermeil medal, an honour bestowed by the city of Paris. She paid tribute to the supporters' "exemplary behaviour" and "the contagious joy of fans from both Irelands".

"Thanks a million! We witnessed amazing things from you guys, with your serenading and singing," she added. "You created an incredible atmosphere. We're proud, as Parisians, to have experienced that. We've had hard times, so your support and kindness has touched us."

The presentation took place in the Paris fan zone beneath the Eiffel Tower, and Ms Hidalgo gifted fans with replicas of the iconic monument. She also handed out official adidas UEFA EURO 2016 footballs and shirts of Paris Saint-Germain and Stade Français, the capital's rugby union team.

Previous recipients of the Grand Vermeil medal include writer Toni Morrison, jazz pianist Herbie Hancock and nine-time French Open winner Rafael Nadal.