PUBS up and down the land remain empty as red-blooded men and women are humiliatingly forced to watch Big Brother while England’s football stars gallivant on holiday instead of donning the Three Lions.
Yes that’s right, the national side are nowhere to be seen in Euro 2008, but the show still goes on in cosmopolitan Wilmslow with hundreds of foreign nationals glued to their screens willing on their home countries.
Not only that but we have several representatives actually in the championships. Alderley Edge dwellers Edwin van der Sar, the dutch goalkeeper, and Christiano Ronaldo, the hope of Portugal, who are normally Man United team-mates, are both hoping to lift the trophy.
With both ITV and BBC1 both showing ALL the games it’s easy to be away from the country of your birth and still follow your national side as if you were actually back home.
With its many restaurants specialising in international cuisine, Wilmslow has almost every nationality covered when it comes to the crunch matches, but not everyone cheers their side on because of the beautiful football.
Erica Capolino, who is half Korean, half Italian, works as a waitress in Strada on Water Lane and knows very little about football, but does know a handsome man when she sees one.
She said: "I don’t know much about football but I do know that Francesco Totti has a great body."
Most other fans are more well-informed about their sides, and who better to spill the beans on the old penalties enemy than former Germany U-16s striker Thomas Ludecke.
The Trafford College catering lecturer, who lives on Turnbury Drive, Wilmslow, played alongside German legends Jurgen Klinsmann and Lother Matheus in his younger days and nearly turned professional for Hamburg.
He said: "I am a massive Germany fan. I love Bastian Schweinsteiger and judging by our opening performance I think we should be favourites, we were strong."
The dad-of-one, who does a bit of coaching himself and works at the Stannylands hotel as a chef, has a theory why his home country are so good at penalties, especially against England. "Discipline. We just know where to put it."
The former Channel M chef is in good company as the German national side stayed at Mottram Hall during Euro 96 and became well liked by Wilmslow residents during their stay.
A firm favourite in the competition is Spain, and Wilmslow practically has a Spanish quarter in the shape of the King William pub on Manchester Road which provides some of the most sumptuous tapas in Cheshire.
Landlord Franco Resina, 40, who has lived in Wilmslow for 16 years, said: "I don’t want to do anything special for the Spanish games because I feel it would be unfair to the English fans who have missed out. I will be inviting a few friends round and hopefully see Spain do well. And he promised free shots all round for every Spanish goal.
"We have a good side on paper and I feel if we get passed the group stage then we will really do something."
Although a Spanish restaurant, La Tasca on Parsonage Green is managed by Fabien Cheno, 29, of Chorlton, who hails from France, the winners of Euro 2000.
The Burgundy-born manager said: "I really like Nicholas Anelka even though he missed that penalty for Chelsea. I’m not sure about our chances though because we have a lot of old players. Our chances rest with Frank Ribery who is a great player."
Whether they win, lose or draw the atmosphere in La Tasca will be electrifying as they have four Poles, a Spaniard and a Czech on the books. The same goes for the whole of Wilmslow, with so many nationalities to choose from, this tournament will be an easy one for the neutral to become partisan and maybe find a second home in another country’s culture.