Retailers across the country are giving football fans an opportunity to cheer for the Three Lions at their convenience, literally! From local shops to big supermarkets, everyone is adding to the chorus as England take on Croatia in the semifinal match of FIFA World Cup in Russia today (July 11).
Nisa Retail is rolling out a roar for England’s pride of lions, dedicating 12 vehicles to the World Cup semi-final first team and manager Gareth Southgate.
The Scunthorpe delivered wholesale specialist is paying tribute and drumming up extra support as deliveries hit the road to some of the 3,000 shops stocked by the team.
From beer to crisps, half time food, full time bubbly or – worst case scenario – a cup of tea for sympathy, the Normanby Enterprise Park giant will cater for the needs of those last minute dashes to convenience stores nationwide.
“The England team’s performance in this World Cup has united the country. We felt we should honour them and hopefully, through the power of social media, our messages of support might reach the team and give them an extra boost.” Steve Leach, sales director at Nisa Retail said.
If World Cup fever hadn’t already hit North Yorkshire hard enough it has now thanks to a fabulous football donation to local players.
In a unique gesture, Scarborough-based supermarket Proudfoot met with FC Seamer Juniors and Scarborough Ladies FC to present them with 48 footballs ahead of the big match tonight.
Donated to Proudfoot by Coca Cola, to commemorate the World Cup and England’s progress through to the semi-finals, the balls were kicked across to the two local teams to ensure they have a good supply to ensure they can score their way through next season.
Owen Willis, Treasurer and coach at Scarborough Ladies FC and coach at FC Seamer Juniors, said: “Scarborough Ladies FC and FC Seamer Juniors are very grateful for the continued support of Proudfoot as they look to encourage as many players as possible into the sport and retain their participation through the commitment of both clubs to equal game time and an ethos of player development over results.
“The footballs are just fantastic and everyone here is looking forward to the football tonight and send our very best wishes to Gareth Southgate and his team.”
The big guns of grocery are not allowing themselves to be left behind. Asda has launched operation ‘It’s Coming Home’ from its London “Southgate” store in time for England’s semi-final against Croatia.
Asda staff at all stores who want time off for the most anticipated match in years can work with their local store to make a substitution, with a shift swap. The plan also includes showing the game in colleague areas at all stores and letting those on shift wear their World Cup shirts.
Throughout the World Cup, the retailer has already sold over 20,000 sets of George bunting and over 3,000 bandanas and whistles. England novelty hats, face paint and foam fingers are also flying off the shelves as fans go World Cup mad.
An Asda spokesperson said: “Operation ‘It’s Coming Home’ has been brewing for a while and following Saturdays heroics; it’s now in full swing.
“Colleagues that want a substitute on their shifts are able to organise this with their store and extra bangers, burgers and booze are being delivered to stores in anticipation for a sales surge.”
Iceland has joined discount supermarkets Aldi and Lidl in announcing an early store closing on Sunday if England get through to the World Cup final.
Iceland said it will close all its 900-plus Iceland and The Food Warehouse stores in the UK at 2pm on Sunday July 15 if England are playing in the World Cup final that afternoon.
All store colleagues will be paid in full for their scheduled hours on that day if the early closures go ahead, it added
Iceland Operations Director Ewan McMahon said: “We have huge confidence in the ability of the England team to reach and win the World Cup final – but we did not want to tempt fate, so we were planning to make this announcement on Wednesday once the semi-final result was known.
“However, the Germans have already got their towels on the sun-loungers with yesterday’s announcements from two of our rivals, so it seems right to let our colleagues and customers know our plans now. We also feel that it is right to extend early closing to all our UK stores so that our colleagues in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland can enjoy the match, too.”
Earlier Aldi said in tweet: “We’re pretty sure it’s coming home right? If England reach the World Cup Final we’re gonna close all our stores in England early at 3pm on Sunday 15th July. We want our colleagues to be the 12th man cheering on the lads.”
Lidl’s tweet sounded more confident: “As the *official* supermarket of the England Football team, let’s make *this* announcement official… *when* our boys make it to the final this Sunday, it will be early doors across our English stores.”