Stories about a raucous pub crowd in downtown Saskatoon usually have a time stamp around 1 a.m.
But ask anyone who was near Winston’s English Pub in Saskatoon between 8 a.m. and 10 a.m. Saturday morning, and they’ll tell you it was about as loud as it can get.
Ex-pats, Canadians with English heritage and a few bandwagoners exploded into cheers as England dominated Sweden 2-0 in the World Cup, securing their first semi-final berth in 28 years.
— Chris Vandenbreekel (@Vandecision) July 7, 2018
Winston’s beer taps were flowing, while many chowed down some breakfast in between cheering and jeering at the big screens in the building.
“You can never go wrong with a morning beer,” said Tom Waldron, who enjoyed the game with friends.
Mick MacDougall, who grew up in East London and moved to Saskatoon 11 years ago, said the atmosphere at the pub was almost as good as being at home.
“In some ways it gets a bit better, because there’s ex-pats there,” he said. “Everybody goes nuts, they go a bit further.”
Every shot, miss and foul elicited a cry from the crowd — many of whom weren’t alive when England won their only World Cup title in 1966.
Jeremy Duggan has been unsuccessfully cheering for an English win his whole life. Going to Canadian pubs in the early morning during the World Cup tournament has been a tradition for him and his brother.
“It’s so much fun … we’ve been doing this for as long as I can remember,” the 50-year-old said.
And if England goes the rest of the way, every fan who spoke to 650 CKOM said they’d be singing the same chorus: “it’s coming home.”
England will play their semi-final match on Wednesday at 12 p.m. CST.