Here we go again…


So as you can’t failed to have noticed, the World Cup tournament is back, this time hosted in Germany, so be sure to keep an eye on the Berlin metblog for entries from the front lines!

Yesterday England played their first group match against Paraguay. I had to drive my missus to the airport before the game, but I managed to make it in to a packed Brannigans on Broad Street just before kick off. The atmosphere was typical for that of an England game: hundreds of sweaty men and women, all wearing an England top and most carrying an England flag. There were also a few more extravagent costumes, but the less said about those the better. ;-)

Read on for more details of my sunny afternoon in Birmingham!

After a nervous 2nd half to the match, England managed to walk away with 1 – 0 victory. For some reason Brannigans chose to close their doors after the match, and so we made our way back in to the bright and sunny afternoon. Fans were already pouring out on to the streets. The police had already closed Broad Street, presumably to prevent drunken fools from running out in to the traffic. There was also a rather large number of police gathering around the Sports Cafe / Figure of Eight. I guess there must have been an incident or two there already, but I didn’t really see or hear anything. A couple of men were getting a bit rowdy towards the police for some reason, but a couple of other lads came along to calm them down.

We walked down towards the Malt House to have a beer in the sun overlooking the canals, the NIA, and Brindleyplace. A couple of guys decided they’d had enough of the blistering heat, a decided to brave a swim in the canal. Personally, I prefer life.

After this we decided to head back to Broad street to grab a bite to eat, when all of a sudden we found we couldn’t get in to any of the bars! EVERYWHERE suddenly decided to implement a “no England shirts” policy… wtf! On the day of an England match?!? I can understand that some people may have been drinking since the early hours of the afternoon in anticipation of the match, but banning EVERYONE who wants to show their support for the team seems a bit drastic to me. Are we all supposed to bring a change of clothes to town? Oh well.. fortunately the bouncers at Rococo Lounge seemed a bit more reasonable and once they saw that we weren’t the drunk and angry types let us in. Having never been in there before during the day I was pleasantly surprised. The atmosphere was lively, but it wasn’t overly crowded. There were plenty of TV’s to see what was left of the Sweden – Trinidad & Tobago match, and I got a delicious burger, chips, and a drink for less than £5.

There’s not much to be said for the rest of the day. I decided to head home to watch the Argentina game, so I caught a train, walked from the station, and promptly fell asleep on the couch. Doh!

PS Be sure to have a look at the many World Cup photos that are already on FlickR, and we’re only just in to day 3!

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