Colombians downbeat in capital after agonising defeat on penalties
The area around Elephant and Castle was awash with a sea of yellow shirts.
Colombian fans in London were left disappointed after their team crashed out of the World Cup as England defeated them on penalties.
The area around Elephant and Castle in the capital became awash with a sea of yellow shirts and Colombian flags as those in the south of the city packed out bars to watch the game.
During the match, the atmosphere in Lost Rivers bar was passionate, hopeful and intense as the supporters chanted, celebrated and loudly played a number of percussion instruments and horns.
The scene inside Lost Rivers in Elephant and Castle as the Colombian side sang their national anthem pic.twitter.com/JSUqv4oY7Y— Georgina Stubbs (@georginafstubbs) July 3, 2018
Speaking after England clinched the victory following a raft of extra time and then a win of 4-3 on penalties, Erika Rodriguez who was born in Britain said the loss “just sucks”.
The 27-year-old from south east London, whose family is from Cali in Colombia, told the Press Association: “I just really wanted to beat them (England). I thought it was a good game.
“England thought it would be easier than it was, I am glad we took them to penalties – but it just sucks.
“The boys played really well, you could see they really wanted it.”
Aldemir Zambrane, speaking moments after England scored the winning penalty, said he was “really sad”.
The 52-year-old from Brixton, who moved from Cali eight years ago, said: “I am really happy that Colombia got this far. Congratulations to England.”
Despite the loss for Colombia a party atmosphere ensued – with the waving of flags, the playing of music, the loud blowing of whistles, fireworks being set off.
One man carrying smoke bombs on a stick streaming his country’s national colours also paraded through the crowds, garnering cheers and support as he did.
Frank Garcia, who moved to the UK from Cali 18 years ago, said the equalising goal “lit the match” of emotion for the Colombian team.
The 38-year-old said: “It was a great game, and it was really hard for Colombia until the end.
“When you get to the stage of penalties it is just luck, you can be the best player and the best team – big name footballers miss penalties.”
He revealed he will be supporting the Three Lions from now on, as will Maria Sanchez, 35, who said England is her second home after moving here from Bogota 10 years ago.