Norwich underwhelmed by the World Cup craze

A World Cup sign outside Woolpack pub. PHOTO: Amy Newbery

A World Cup sign outside Woolpack pub. PHOTO: Amy Newbery - Credit: Archant

Amy Newbery wonders if Norwich has missed out on World Cup fever this year.

The World Cup is upon us once again after four years, which typically means lots of drinking and shouting at the television.

There's no escaping the World Cup; the majority of my friends are watching the games, and even I, who's not a football fan found myself watching a match or two.

However, you wouldn't think that Norwich really cared just by walking around the city. I have not seen a single celebration in any stores or restaurants which the exception of pubs. No flags, no banners or posters, nothing.

This I find astounding because when I first arrived in England, the majority of people I talked to told me they played or watched football regularly. It's even more bizarre as England's captain this year is Harry Kane who once played for Norwich City Football Club.

Perhaps there is so little visible celebration in stores because the expectations for the England team weren't particularly high.

During the last World Cup (2014), England was knocked out after just two matches which was a first. Additionally, it was the first time since 1958 England was knocked out in the group stages.

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Usually, commercial businesses can profit from worldwide events such as the World Cup by selling limited editions of clothes, food, shoes, etc. After the disappointing events of 2014, it may be stores didn't see the point in celebrating the World Cup this year.

The only store I saw celebrating the World Cup (which a picture of Harry Kane on their shop window) is the official shop for Norwich's F.C. which hardly counts.

Perhaps this lack of celebration will change after England's win against Tunisia the other day.

All this being said, if you're somewhat put down by the lack of hype for the World Cup in Norwich, just go to a pub.

All the pubs will show the matches because customers, alcohol and football are a profitable combination. Even so, only a few decorations can be seen outside pubs such as strings of little flags and signboards.

Despite this, the people of Norwich will undoubtedly be watching and celebrating the World Cup, and perhaps with the excessive exposure of the event, an underwhelmed Norwich city may be a blessing in disguise.