July 23 2014 Latest news:
Friday, June 13, 2014
World Cup fever took hold acrossNorfolk last night as the first game of the Brazil 2014 tournament kicked off.
It was the moment many had been waiting for, with flags adorning cars, sweepstake teams drawn and football sticker albums swiftly filling up.
Pubs across the Fine City did a brisk trade as people lapped up the colourful opening ceremony before the first of the action – with hosts Brazil facing Croatia.
The opening ceremony was hosted at the Arena de Sao Paulo, with a cast of 660 dancers paying homage to Brazil’s culture and football tradition around a “living” ball – resembling a giant spaceship.
The display culminated in a performance of official World Cup song, We Are One, by Jennifer Lopez and rapper Pitbull.
In Norfolk, the excitement had been building up all day.
Twitter was abuzz with interest.
Matthew Jackson, tweeting @The_Real_Jacko, wrote “I’ve got a feeling that this world cup is going to be class! #Buzz”
Ollie stammers (@StammersOllie) posted “Today is the biggest day in football for the last 4 years #WorldCup”
And businesses got in the spirit of the tournament.
Cleverdicks coffee shop (@Cleverdickcoffe), in All Saints Green, wrote: “A bit of samba to kick things off this morning #Brazil2014 #WorldCup #ComeOnEngland”
The Rose Inn (@RoseNorwich) even posted a photo of World Cup trivia sheets attached to the wall in the gents toilets.
There were mixed feelings, and fortunes, in offices across the county.
Ryan Thompson (@ThomoGunner) wrote “Sweepstake drawn, 2 dream teams up and running, calendar updated with all fixtures – it’s World Cup day! #Brazil2014 #WorldCup #Buzzing”
But Matt Gardiner (@MattDrumUK) posted “I got Colombia in the work World Cup draw. Brilliant.”
England’s campaign starts on Saturday night against Italy, with pubs and restaurants across the region expecting a boost in trade.
Across Britain, the tournament is predicted to generate more than £1bn in sales for UK businesses – assuming that England reach the second round.