This is why England fans are singing Sweet Caroline during Euro 2020 - and lyrics to Neil Diamond classic

It's been a while since large crowds were allowed to gather for live concerts and sports events.

The Covid pandemic has brought enforced lockdowns to limit the spread of the virus as well as social restrictions previously unheard of in living memory on these shores.

So, when England recorded an historic victory over Germany, football fans inside a half-full Wembley Stadium weren't shy about belting out the Neil Diamond song Sweet Caroline.

So loud was the noise inside the stadium that Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate said he'd never heard even a full capacity Wembley reach the levels experienced during the Euro 2020 tie.

England captain Harry Kane, who added to Raheem Sterling's opener against Germany, was left speechless post-match as the 40,000-plus-strong crowd sang Sweet Caroline.

Fans – and players – also carried on the trend as England booked their place in the final of Euro 2020 with an extra time win over Denmark in the tournament’s second semi final.

But why do England fans sing Sweet Caroline, how did it become so popular at football and other sporting events - and what are the lyrics so we can all join in next time!

Let's find out...

Why do England fans sing Sweet Caroline?

Good times never seemed so good as England saw off Germany in the last 16 of the Euros, with fans heard singing Sweet Caroline after the final whistle was blown at Wembley.

Such were the noise levels inside Wembley, Neil Diamond's song is in danger of usurping Three Lions by Baddiel, Skinner and the Lightning Seeds as England's unofficial tournament anthem.

Its origins at sporting events are widely debated with some believing it found its way onto the football terraces from the cricket benches following the 2019 ODI World Cup in England.

Spectators inside Lord's for the final of the competition sang Sweet Caroline after England narrowly beat New Zealand in the super-over, which was decided on boundaries scored.

Others say fans of Aston Villa started the trend during a Championship game against Stoke City earlier that same year, which sparked a 12-game unbeaten run and eventual promotion.

Super League team Castleford Tigers are known to play the song after a home win while boxer Tyson Fury has sung the song at press conferences and in the ring after victory.

Further afield, Major League Baseball team Boston Red Sox sing the song in the middle of the eighth innings at Fenway Park where Diamond performed live in 2010 singing the anthem.

Why is Sweet Caroline so popular?

It's catchy, easy to pick up and an all-round classic song from the late 1960s.

The song seems to fit perfectly among the terrace back catalogue with a little "bah, bah, bah" after "Sweet Caroline", as well as an additional "so good, so good, so good" after the line "Good times never seemed so good", providing chanting opportunities.

Sweet Caroline lyrics

Where it began, I can't begin to knowing

But then I know it's growing strong

Was in the spring

And spring became the summer

Who'd have believed you'd come along

Hands, touching hands

Reaching out, touching me, touching you

Sweet Caroline

Good times never seemed so good

I've been inclined

To believe they never would

But now I

Look at the night and it don't seem so lonely

We filled it up with only two

And when I hurt

Hurting runs off my shoulders

How can I hurt when holding you

One, touching one

Reaching out, touching me, touching you

Sweet Caroline

Good times never seemed so good

I've been inclined

To believe they never would

Oh no, no

Sweet Caroline

Good times never seemed so good

Sweet Caroline

I believe they never could

Sweet Caroline

Good times never seemed so good