Yes, you want to show some sartorial support for your team – but dressing head-to-toe in their kit will only invite hurtful mockery from fellow pub-goers. Best to limit yourself to the shorts, socks and studded football boots, twinned with a single-breasted blazer and a crisp Oxford shirt. Let’s have it!
Boozy sing-a-longs are all part of the carnival-like fun, so memorise these popular chants before heading down the pub: “A goal is a goal/So let’s have a goal!” (sung to the tune of Hot ‘N’ Cold by Katy Perry); “Oh do come off it, ref/Are you blind as well as deaf?” (sung to the tune of Roar by Katy Perry); “England England, green and hilly/You beat England?/Don’t be silly!” (sung to the tune of Waking Up In Vegas by Katy Perry).
Watching footie in the pub is all about earthy, rough ‘n’ tumble rowdiness, and your drink orders should reflect that. Normally drink a ’98 Malbec? Then downgrade to the less refined ’97. Does a man good to get a little gritty now and then!
The offside rule can seem intimidatingly complicated to the newbie, but is easily remembered using this handy mnemonic: “If the ball is abrace of you/With no men abreast/A rear turn sends you offside/(Unless flanked to the west)”. Write it on your hand!
Footie fandom demands that you make an excitable racket as you lose yourself in the giddy atmos. Screaming like a wounded banshee for the entire 90 minutes is one way to go, but your fellow fans will also appreciate you blowing a slide whistle every time a pass is made, or banging two saucepans together whenever the opposing team take possession of the ball.
Good luck to both the England and Wales national teams. Hooray for the Home Nations! Hooray for young Prince George!
Words by Joe Madden
Illustrations by Ferry Gouw
An international festival of light
Dinner in a decommissioned 1967 underground carriage
Half-price brunch and a HUGE fried chicken burger