have a way of stressing out their supporters and this World Cup campaign is no
Every sports bar in Cayman was
heaving on Wednesday morning, including Centre Spot on Mary Street. Beer flowed freely despite
the early start and it seemed more to settle frayed nerves than for pleasure.
An early Jermain Defoe goal against
Slovenia gave England the
start they desperately needed and it turned out to be the winner. But shaky England were
made to sweat all the way because they could not find a killer second.
turned out in their masses too, eager to see their team secure a place through
to the last 16 by beating a stubborn Algerian side. They too won 1-0, only the
deserved score from Landon Donovan came in the dying moments after a series of
near misses left American onlookers as nervous as a BP executive at an oil
Both sides face difficult fixtures
next to advance to the business end of this pulsating tournament.
Mesut Ozil’s thunderbolt saw off Ghana and clinched the top spot in Group D for Germany. And
that teed up a mouth-watering clash with Steven Gerrard and Co in Bloemfontein on Sunday.
Despite defeat, Ghana still
progresses as runners-up and will play the US in Rustenburg on Saturday. Governor
Duncan Taylor was among the Centre Spot crowd.
“I’m more relieved rather than happy,” he beamed after. “I think it was
a better performance than last time. England were pretty good for the
first half hour and then they were less than convincing. They should have won
by four or five nil, I think.
“Rooney getting substituted was
probably not a bad idea. He is lacking confidence. It’s a shame he didn’t score
but at least they were looking a bit more promising than last week.
“How far they go depends on whether
they can get their act together and whether they can get their mojo back. They
showed a little bit of it today, especially in the first half hour, but it was
still not a completely convincing performance, unfortunately.”
Rachel Longman was another England fan
whose heart was in her mouth at times. “I hope England will go all the way now,
but realistically they’ll get as far as quarter-finals or semis.”
Sarah Lacey claims she was shaking
the whole way through. “England
started better than before but then they got tight and nervous in the second
half. It wasn’t pretty football but we did what we needed to do. Next game will
be good, we’re better against the better teams. I reckon England can get
to the semis now. I called it, Rooney getting substituted. It’s a bit worrying.
He hasn’t been playing well and needs to step up.”
Centre Spot owner Lee Webb said:
“I’m really pleased because here gets really packed here when England and Brazil play. If either of those
teams go out, the bar takings go down. The World Cup is good for business all
round, I think. All the bars are busy.”
One ecstatic USA supporter
was Dillon Evans. “We missed a lot of opportunities that were so easy. You’d
think that being professional athletes they would score from them very easily.
They were missing them all until the very end so it was really nail-biting. I
was hoping that England
would tie up and get knocked out and USA would make up for that after
the cheating in the last game but it all worked out and we’ll see how it goes
in the next round.”