My World Cup Story: Drinking with the Irish National Team

Nancy Pierce at the World Cup in Orlando in 1994.
Courtesy of Nancy Pierce

This is part of a series of reader-submitted stories about World Cup adventures and traditions. Click here to submit your own.

By Nancy Pierce, Plano, Texas:

In 1994 my boyfriend (now husband) and I had attended World Cup games at the Citrus Bowl in Orlando. Each evening the postgame scene was centered around Church Street Station, where thousands of fans from several countries had gathered to celebrate.

As we were enjoying the raucous-yet-friendly party, someone called my name from one of the balconies overlooking the crowded plaza. I looked up to see John, the son of Ireland's manager, Jack Charlton. John and I had coached a bit together earlier that summer. He motioned for us to meet him at the door. We followed him up the stairs to a handsome room with a bar running the length.

Filling the room was the Irish National Team enjoying a well-deserved postgame beverage. So here my soccer-mad self spent the next several hours drinking Guinness with the men of Ireland as they prepared to enter the second round of the 1994 World Cup.

Not a night I will soon forget.

Planet Futbol
Share your World Cup story
SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide - from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Seth Davis, and more - delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.