3rd Place Play-Off: Germany v Portugal
This should have been a meaningless game. Who remembers who came second in any World Cup, never mind third?
However, it was Germany's World Cup. They had been fabulous hosts, and anyone who came out here for the World Cup fell in love with Germany and the people who welcomed them. Germany had discovered a sense of pride long lost. They wanted to party, and they deserved it.
The game was being played in Stuttgart, so it was vitually impossible for us to go (7 hours each way anyone?). Who cared anyway, we were in Berlin, the country's capital and with an estimated 1.2 million people expected to turn up at the Fan Mile in Berlin's Tiergarten, that was THE place to be for the World's biggest party.
I couldn't possibly do it justice by attempting to describe the atmosphere, but it was an atmosphere of joy and pride. Germany won the game yes, but it was more than that. The number of Germans who came up to us crying was amazing. I can only compare it to the death of Diana, in which a nation had a cathartic experience and used it get rid of a lifetime of sadness and grief.
It was a totally friendly atmosphere, and everyone was the best of pals that night. We partied until around 4am. I can't imagine it being anywhere near as friendly if it had been English fans, I'm sorry to say.
Keir's brother Scott came out to join us. He and Keir caused quite a stir with their kilts and had countless photograph requests. As we Scots do, we have a great ability to attract fellow Celts, and before long we were surrounded by a bevvy of Irish lassies and a piper who even inspired Lee to start singing "Flower of Scotland".
Enjoy the piper, and enjoy the moment when Lee realises that he could have won a few bob with his uncannily accurate prediction of the final score of the game.
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