THE England fans in Oxford’s Wahoo bar fell silent as Uruguay’s Luis Suarez slammed the ball into the back of the net, all but eliminating the Three Lions from the World Cup.
There had been a carnival atmosphere at the Hythe Bridge Street venue since before kick-off as the Oxford faithful sang their hearts out in support of the national side.
But joyous scenes turned to tension as England went in 1-0 down before the break, and though Wayne Rooney equalised in the second half, a second Suarez strike condemned Roy Hodgson’s side.
Fans draped in the St George’s flag stood staring wide-eyed at the television screens as the final minutes ticked away with despair etched on their faces.
Some fans struggled to hide their disappointment as they streamed out of the bar after the final whistle blew in Sao Paulo.
Connor Wakefield, 18, a post office clerk of King’s Close, Thame, said: “It was so disappointing because we looked so good but nothing came of it.
“We had prepared for the game and had the majority of possession but we have ended up with nothing.
“There is still a chance we can go through but it’s very slim.”
His words were echoed by 20-year-old Matthew Organ, a manager of a sound proofing company, who lives in Crown Lane, Benson.
He said: “There was lots of effort but no end product. Uruguay had their chances and they took them.
“There was a lapse of concentration that got them their second goal.
“We need a miracle now to make it through.”
England can still progress to the knock-out stages, but only if they win in their final group game against Costa Rica. They also need Italy to defeat Uruguay and Costa Rica.
There is also hope among the England fans in Oxford that this Three Lions side has the potential to go on to better things in future tournaments.
Sam Mills, 20, of Woodstock Road and a student at the University of Oxford’s Jesus College, said: “I would say it was a great England performance.
“It was one of the strongest teams we have put out but we did not take the initiative enough.
“I think it was a brilliant but humble campaign so we can come back from that stronger, but it’s still really disappointing.
“I was so euphoric when Rooney scored; I thought we would go on to win.
“I was convinced that a draw would be disappointing – I’m so upset.”
“I thought this would be easier. I thought the crowd was on our side.”
Joe Nicholls, 34, of Thames View, Abingdon
“I don’t thinkwe should have played Wayne Rooney.”
John Mould, 24, an Army private from Oxford
“The first goal from Suarez was formulaic. We were way ahead in possession.”
Jack Martin, 21, a student, of Woodstock Road, Oxford
“I’m disappointed, but I’m sure the rest of the tournament will be just as entertaining.”
Pete Mortimore, 29, manager of the Wahoo bar
Our top stories:
8:00am Monday 30th November 2015
OXFORD’S five tower blocks are about to undergo the biggest makeover in their 50-year existence.
8:30am Saturday 28th November 2015
ROAD safety campaigners say they are “astonished” that drivers with as many as 51 points on their licences are still allowed on the county’s roads.
9:00am Saturday 28th November 2015
YOUNGSTERS at an Oxfordshire primary school could finally be able to tuck into their hot dinners in a dining hall after the Prime Minister came to their aid.
8:00am Saturday 28th November 2015
BAYS in Frideswide Square will be “tweaked” after bus companies complained they were too small to safely accommodate vehicles.
6:30am Saturday 28th November 2015
IT HAS called Cowley Road home for the past 90 years, but on Monday family-run Oxford timber merchant W G Powell will close its doors for the last time.
6:00am Saturday 28th November 2015
ALL over Oxfordshire thousands of older people are fighting one of the cruellest but hardest-to-spot maladies of all: loneliness.