That’s about 4 ounces more beer for every adult in the entire country.
Though humans have been kicking balls for thousands of years, England prides itself as the originator of soccer as the world knows it today: The modern rules were developed there in the 19th century. As a result, English soccer fans have once again adopted “It’s coming home” as the country’s rallying cry during this year’s World Cup run. But just a heads up for the English soccer team if they do bring the trophy home: Pretty much everyone will be hungover when they get there.
The British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) has been following the U.K.’s booze consumption throughout this competition, and as England has continued winning, the number of pints patrons are downing has increased as well. With the English team now just one victory away from the finals, the BBPA believes that this week's Wednesday night match against Croatia could see an extra 10 million pints sold in pubs across the U.K., according to the Plymouth Herald.
If that seems like a huge number of beers, you’re completely right. By comparison, during England’s last match against Sweden—which happened during the very booze-friendly hours of Saturday afternoon, mind you—the BBPA believes a mere eight million more pints than normal were moved across the bar. Meanwhile, The Drinks Business cites data from the debit transaction company Worldpay suggesting that the peak sales time for pubs has been about four minutes before the end of halftime, when, on average, nearly 2,000 customers per minute are being served at pubs across the U.K.
But to further put that 10 million pint prediction in perspective, according to the U.K.’s Office for National Statistics, the total drinking age (18 years and older) population of the United Kingdom is only about 52 million people (including the Scots, whether they like English soccer or not), which means on average, every adult in Great Britain will drink at least four ounces of beer during the match. And that’s just in the pubs!
And then, not to get ahead of ourselves, but the next big question is, just how many more pints would be sold assuming England makes it into the finals against either France or Belgium, both rival European teams? That final is set to kick off at 4 p.m. local English time on Sunday. The BBPA hasn’t put out its predictions for the possibility, though the group has said all of the matches so far have led pub patrons to create an approximately $160 million boost to the U.K. economy. If England does win it all, expect that economic boost to be wiped out with an extremely lethargic Monday.