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This one's a throwback. It’s England vs Colombia, 2016 World Cup and you’re in the Hare & Hounds, Billinge, lucky enough to be sampling their best-selling Moorhouse’s White Witch. It’s a local favourite, smooth, brewed in the shadows of Pendle Hill, full of flavour and cherished by all whose lips it passes. It complements the occasion perfectly, calming the pre-kick off nerves and bringing a typically Lancashire feel to proceedings. No Colombian rum tonight, you’ve got to make some partisan choices at the bar, this is serious.

Before you know it, England have won their first penalty shootout in 20 years and you’re eight pints in, dancing on the backrest, tearing into the bloke who’s been dying to slag off Jordan Henderson all game and finally got his change in the shootout. Suddenly realisation hits you like a Colombian pack mule. It’s a work night. Alas, you assume that the damage is done and persist regardless of tomorrow’s impending tenderness. Yet you awake as fresh as a daisy with a spring in your step, bereft of any ill-feeling (literally). This ale is as safe as houses. Not just any houses. English, penalty shootout winning, quarter-final bound houses. If you’re deciding to session on the lager you’re missing out.

Luke Connelly

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