England fans in Northampton endured ecstasy then agony as their team is tonight left on the brink of an early World Cup exit.
Supporters packed into pubs around the town centre to cheer on Roy Hodgson’s men.
An almost inevitable goal by Liverpool striker Luis Suarez put England behind after 39 minutes of the first half.
But, despite some chances from the South American side in the second half, England made a spirited fightback and the Penny Whistle pub in Abington Square went wild when Wayne Rooney tapped in his first ever World Cup goal on 75 minutes.
Patriotic songs shook the air as fans seemed convinced captain Steven Gerrard would inspire England to their first points of the World Cup, stoked by more exciting play.
But then, seemingly out of nothing, a long goal kick saw Suarez pounce again with just six minutes of regular time left to leave recently celebrating England fans shell-shocked.
Despite the Three Lions’ best efforts they could not break the Uruguayan defence again and the game finished 2-1.
Hodgson said afterwards: “We’e done well enough to get back in the game, could go on to win the game with our dominance, but of course they scored the goal.
“I’m bitterly disappointed. We came with such high hopes and weren’t able to deliver; a major sadness.”
As disappointed fans piled out of the pubs across Northampton, they were left pondering the most enterprising football many had seen from England in any World Cup, but also, in all likelihood, the earliest exit too.