Despite every England supporter saying they wouldn’t get carried away with the World Cup and over-hype Gareth Southgate’s team’s chances, it took precisely ten minutes for just that to happen.
When captain Harry Kane prodded the Three Lions into the lead over little-fancied Tunisia, the floodgates opened.
On Twitter at least ...
It was a glorious time to be English.
As the young team threw caution to the wind, adopting an attacking style that is seldom deployed by the national side, Twitter’s higher-ups were cooing.
Memories of Euro ’96 and ‘football coming home’ were pleasantly re-kindled.
But some kind of self-own was always just round the corner.
Drama. Tunisia were awarded a penalty in the 33rd minute when Kyle Walker conceded what was repeatedly described as a ‘soft pen’.
As night turns to day, England fans turned on the England team.
Quickly, the focus moved from England’s energetic style to the various reasons why they were no longer champions-elect.
Including Tunisia’s ‘robust’ defending against Kane.
And the cursed VAR.
The Video Assistant Referee system, already established as the pantomime villain of the tournament.
And, er, the midges.
The excuses were mounting up.
With the score dead-locked at 1-1, and England appearing unable to a hit a cow’s arse with a banjo, resignation set in.
And then, up stepped King Harry.