At home and away, England fans are gathering in large numbers to watch tonight’s clash with the United States. The two nations will face off at Al Bayt Stadium in the city of Al Khor, 35 kilometers north of Doha. In England, football fans – many of whom have probably had the day off work – watched together as Wales lost to Iran earlier today. Supporters of the Three Lions are set to spend 30 million pints and give the economy £300 million today as they watch Harry Kane’s stars take on the US.
Pubs still struggling after the pandemic are expected to fill up for the clash with two-thirds of people screening it.
Emma McClarkin, chief executive of the British Beer and Pub Association, said: ‘Pubs around the country are already warmed up and ready to welcome fans.
‘They’re hoping the World Cup will provide a boost for business during a difficult time.
‘Many will be making use of investment made in outside space and equipment during the pandemic to ensure fans enjoy the tournament whatever the weather, and many have special events, deals and celebrations planned.’
Football fans gather early to watch Wales vs Iran clash today.
England fans dressed up for the occasion.
Pubs are set to generate good sales tonight.
Meanwhile in Qatar, many fans have set out to watch tonight’s match. Two fans were interviewed while clutching a replica of the Jules Rimet trophy in Souq Waqif, Doha. They say it’s their lucky charm.
James Smith, 26, and Laurence Pemberton, 26, from Cheltenham, hold their version of the world championship trophy England won in 1966 as they pose for pictures with fans from around the world. Mr Smith said he appreciated the Three Lions’ chance to progress in the tournament, saying of his experience in Qatar: ‘With all the negatives happening, I’m a bit worried, but everyone is very friendly. kind, very respectful, the weather was amazing and all the fans came together.’
England fans at the Red Lion pub before England v USA.
Many people took the day off work especially for tonight’s match
Supporters of the Three Lions will sink 30 million pins tonight.
Some England fans also arrived at Hamad International Airport on shuttle flights from Dubai. Fans were instructed to board buses from the nearest metro station for the 25-minute journey to the stadium in Al Khor, north of Doha. England fan Jim Noyce, 59, from Rugby, arrived on a shuttle flight from Dubai and questioned how smooth things would go at the 68,895 capacity stadium .
He told the PA news agency: ‘Compared to where we were on Monday, this is a real ride. The people are so friendly, really fun, can’t do enough for you, I just think they didn’t expect such a large number of people.’
James Smith and Laurence Pemberton in Qatar.
He continued: ‘For us we’ve got no panic, we don’t go home until eight o’clock tomorrow morning so, worst scenario, we’d have to get a taxi, but I just wonder about the logistics of it, is it such a great idea?
‘But in general it’s everything you need.’
On whether England will follow Germany’s lead and make a stand after Fifa prevented the use of rainbow-coloured armbands, Mr Noyce said: ‘I think they’ll bide their time and pick the game they’re going to do it. Germany are playing Spain on Sunday, I think they’ll wear the rainbow and if Germany do, I think England will follow.’