Thursday 19 October 2017

Come on you boys in green!

By Amy lewis

A huge crowd watches the Ireland v Belgium game outside the Centenary Stores in Charlotte Street on Saturday afternoon.
A huge crowd watches the Ireland v Belgium game outside the Centenary Stores in Charlotte Street on Saturday afternoon.
Ireland fans Niamh Parker and Sarah Beaver.

Pubs across the town were hit by a football frenzy as Ireland took on Belgium in the second of their Euro 2016 games over the weekend.

People of all ages donned their flags, jerseys and anything green as they took to stools and streets to cheer on the boys in green. One of the main attractions was 'the big screen machine' outside the Centenary Stores, which attracted over 300 people to watch the match.

'We hired it for the first three matches. It is weather dependent but we have been blessed with the fine weather for both of the matches,' said Manager of The Centenary Stores Liam Sinnott. 'It was a novelty and brought something new.'

Hopes were high for Ireland as they defended their side throughout the opening 45 minutes of the game but their strong defence was short-lived. In the 48th minute, O'Neill's side was met by the wrath of the Belgians who got a step ahead with the first goal of the match.

Tension in the Bordeaux stadium was echoed back at home in Wexford as fans roared and cried at the players on screens to pick up their game. Unfortunately, it was all downhill for the Irish team from here, as two more goals for Belgium left the score at 3-0 to Ireland by the time of the final whistle.

Despite a disappointing loss, spirits remained high around Wexford, with many fans sticking around for match conversations and commiserations until late in the evening.

The atmosphere was electric,' said Liam. 'It was a bit disappointing that we lost but we still have a chance to qualify on Wednesday so we will give it another go then.'

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