After chewing every cuticle and nail possible on Tuesday as England progressed to the last eight (surely as much as anyone expected) we now get to meet Sweden in the quarter finals.
However, despite every pundit telling me that we are home and dry my memories tell me otherwise. Ever since I have been watching World Cup/European Championships I cannot remember us ever beating the Swedes and Graham Taylor famously coined his ‘Turnip’ nickname after being dumped out of the Euros by Thomas Brolin et al.
I can recall a plethora of draws but it has never been easy and, apparently, out of the last 15 meetings between the two countries, we have won twice. That’s right, just the twice, so I can’t see how we are overwhelming favourites but don’t let that get in the way of a bit of lazy journalism (i.e Manchester City are better than Malmo and AIK Stockholm et al).
Anyway, it was definitely a case of after the Lord Mayor’s Show in Mapperley on Wednesday evening at the 243 – Old Black Horse DE7 6BY at around 9pm.
There was just one other punter apart from my drinking pal and I and this is a big old boozer. In fact, bearing in mind that the population of Mapperley is less than 300 and it has no shops then this place sticks out like a sore thumb.
Nonetheless, as village boozers go, it clearly caters for a food market as demonstrated by its signage.
I had a very good pint of Mosaic (Aurora) and there were Nutbrook Brewery beermats so this is a place that likes to keep its trade local.
I suspect it will be a totally different animal on Saturday at 3pm when England face Sweden and that is why football and pubs are inextricably linked more than any other sport.
It’s a Greene King house and it was well cared for with a cracking beer patio and definitive drinking and eating areas…it just wasn’t very full!
(houses opposite – stopping in tonight and preparing for Saturday…)
The barmaid was friendly and I hope this place continues to survive in a very small and off the beaten track village in Derbyshire.
Contrast this with earlier in the night when we also (re) visited 87 – The Bell DE7 6EF in nearby Smalley. I thought it was a fantastic boozer the first time I visited it back in November.
https://lifeafterfootball839.wordpress.com/2017/11/08/you-can-ring-my-bell and this did nothing to change my mind. A cracking selection of beers from Abbeydale, Shiny and Hartshorne were on offer with lots of breweriania and two rooms crackling with atmosphere at around 7.30 on a Wednesday.
The barmaid asked me if I had a CAMRA card and reminded me “It’s worth it if you like real ale” as both myself and my drinking buddy were indulging.
I expect both pubs will be packed to the rafters on Saturday as England march on to another penalty shoot-out against Sweden (you read it here first) but that appears to be the norm for The Bell whereas I’m not sure the Old Black Horse has that feeling often enough for a pub that delivers great beer.
“We are Ron’s 22, hear the roar, of the red, white and blue!”