Sunday, 13 June 2010

Algeria V Slovenia: The Ultimate World Cup Pub (bar & restaurant) Crawl

By Cat McGovern

I’m not going to lie, I’m feeling rather delicate after watching all three games in the pub last night and the thought of doing it all over again makes me shudder a bit. It’s 12.15pm and I make my way to Fever Pitch. I am thankful that it is only a five minute walk away from my flat, but it’s looking a bit bare. I try and go inside but the door is locked. The staff tell me that they have lost power, as have four other buildings on the street. I wait for a bit whilst they call the power board and they give the sad news that the power won’t be back on until 4pm. Anxious that I was going to miss the match, we have no choice but to watch it elsewhere.

Fortunately, that pub that I was in last night watching all the football was Fever Pitch, so I can give you a low down of what it’s about. For the first match, it was quite quiet so it would be wise to book in here as every table was reserved. The beauty of Fever Pitch is that no matter where you stand in the venue, you are able to see one of its thirteen screens, so you never miss a second of the action. To avoid queues, they have made it a cash only bar which is actually quite refreshing to see as it makes service swift and easy. Another useful time saver are the £12 beer pitchers which will make you look like a hero when you bring it back to a table full of rowdy boys.

Out the back is a small patioed area where people go to get a breather from all things sport and head for the BBQ. I have to say that their burgers (£6) were a welcomed treat after six hours of drinking. The meat is of an extremely good quality and cooked very well. You can also have swordfish steak burgers (£8) and tasty skewers of peppers and beef/lamb.

Slowly as the day went it inevitably got busy, but this only added to the electrifying ambience and it felt as if you were actually at the game. All in all, if you love all things football, Fever Pitch will tick all the boxes.

Right back to the football. We pottered off to The Malt House, just in time to watch the match. I sip my orange juice and lemonade and ask the boyfriend (as he’s the guy with the knowledge) what he thinks, and he’s unamused. He’s finding the match stiflingly boring but pointed out that it’s a good game to watch as Algeria and Slovenia are in the same group as England, so we need to see how they fair. At half time Gary Linekar summed up the mood of the nation by sarcastically opening with ‘Er, hmmm, that was good wasn’t it?’ Second half starts and it’s not any better than the first. Ghezzal receives his second yellow card for a moronic hand ball and soon after that Koren scores for Slovenia. The goal was mainly the result of poor goalkeeping but still it has put them top of the group. I turn to the boyfriend again and ask his final opinions and all he can say is that it is an early contender for worst game of the tournament. Oh dear, let’s hope the next match is better.

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