England fans in Oxford’s pubs were left disappointed as Spain narrowly beat the women’s national side 1-0 in a well fought contest.

Oxford’s pubs were jubilant and packed with excited fans, who were eager to see England win their first World Cup since the men lifted the trophy in 1966.

Pubs opened their doors from around 10.30am and there were no empty seats at The Chequers on the High Street.

READ MORE: Oxford man missing but public warned not to approach

Supporter Ellie, who did not wish to reveal her surname, was watching the game with a friend in The Chequers.

She said getting out of bed early at 5.30am to cheer on the national side had initially been a “pain in the backside” but she said the team had become “more and more convincing as the tournament went on”.

Oxford Mail: Ellie in The Chequers ahead of kick off Ellie in The Chequers ahead of kick off (Image: Ed Halford, Newsquest)

Watching on, as the England side walked out onto the biggest stage in world football, were Will and Becky, who were only visiting Oxford but couldn’t help soaking in the atmosphere.

Becky, who also did not wish to disclose her surname, said: “We have watched all the games.

“I think they will win because they have shown a lot of resilience throughout the tournament.”

Steve Taylor, a regular at the Crown on Cornmarket Street for 23 years, brought England flags to decorate the beer garden and said he was confident the team would “bring it home” after their success at the Euros.

Oxford Mail: Steve Taylor and Ross, pictured right Steve Taylor and Ross, pictured right (Image: Ed Halford, Newsquest)

Despite England going a goal down to Spain in the 29th minute of the game, Mr Taylor said he still believed a comeback was on.

He said: “This team has done so much for women’s football.

“Their legacy will be timeless.”

Mr Taylor had draped his house on Sawpit Road in England fans to mark the occasion and he said the tournament had been great in inspiring more women to take up the sport.

Oxford Mail: Steve's house decked out for the Lionesses Steve's house decked out for the Lionesses (Image: Contributed)

Ross, a manager at the pub, said doors were opened an hour and a half earlier than usual and he expected fans would provide a £300 boost to the pub’s takings.

He said the World Cup would have been more advantageous to the pub if all the games hadn’t been held so early in the morning.

In the Holly Bush on Bridge Street, crowds sat on the edge of their seats and waited with anticipation as the England side sought to pull off the 'greatest comebacks of comebacks'.

Oxford Mail: England fans at the Holly Bush England fans at the Holly Bush (Image: Ed Halford, Newsquest)

With the England side conceding a penalty late on, there were gasps of relief as keeper Mary Earps prevented a second going in from the spot.

Unfortunately, despite their best efforts, the England side failed to equalise.

Matt, 26, from Headington, whose surname was not revealed, said: “They gave it their best shot and we have to recognise that.

“I hope their achievement will gain the recognition it deserves.”

As England fans left the pubs in droves, they were in more subdued spirits.

But, fans were also aware that they had just witnessed a “very special team” give “absolutely everything”.

A performance which no England fan will soon forget.

Help support trusted local news 

Sign up for a digital subscription now: oxfordmail.co.uk/subscribe 

As a digital subscriber you will get: 

Unlimited access to the Oxford Mail website 

  • Advert-light access 
  • Reader rewards 
  • Full access to our app 

About the author 

To sign up to Ed's weekly Politics newsletter, click here: https://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/newsletters/

Ed specialises in writing political stories for the Oxford Mail and The Oxford Times. 

He joined in the team in February 2023, after completing a History undergraduate degree at the University of York and studying for his NCTJ diploma in London.

Ed’s weekly politics newsletter is released every Saturday morning.