Beer And English Football: A Match Made In Heaven
Saturday’s match between Arsenal and Newcastle featured a glimpse of something you rarely see on television — someone drinking a pint of beer.
It’s ridiculous, really. Millions of football fans around the world drink beer either at home, the pub or from the refreshment kiosks when watching football, but it’s against the law in England to drink beer within view of the pitch. Meanwhile sponsors names such as Budweiser, Chang Beer and Carlsberg are so pervasive throughout the Premier League.
Beer and football go together like bees and honey. It’s hard not to imagine one without the other.
Breweries have had a long history of supporting English football, and English football fans have always returned the compliment. Here’s some interesting trivia of the close relationship between beer and football:
- In the 2006 World Cup, organizers in Nuremberg revealed that the 70,000 England fans who flooded the city drank 1.2 million pints of beer – an average of 17 pints each.
- That same year, Newcastle Brown Ale produced limited editions of its bottles crowned with the face of Newcastle legend Alan Shearer.
- Breweries financed the football boom in the 1890s and early 1900s. Clubs such as Aston Villa, Liverpool and West Bromwich Albion all received financial backing from local breweries.
- When Newton Heath, the predecessor to Manchester United, experienced financial trouble, it was Manchester Breweries who saved the team, changed their colors to red and white and formed Manchester United.
- Anfield was a patch of land owned by brewers John and James Orrell, which was bought by fellow brewer John Houlding. The ground staged it first ever football match on September 27, 1884.