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The power of football and the billion pound World Cup effect

I don’t get football. I find it boring, pretentious and generally pointless. In fact, I hate it - I realise I am in the minority.

This became especially apparent during the World Cup when for more than a month everyone (it seemed) except me was obsessed with the events in Brazil.

Not only was it on every television channel and in every newspaper, but shops, offices pubs and homes were full of it.

It didn’t light my candle, but as I said I was in the minority and in fact the impact of the event was astonishing, not least on the boost to the economy.

Before the final, pubs around Britain were expecting to net a staggering £59 million as punters prepared to flood through their doors to watch the playoff.

In the weeks leading up to the final match in July landlords reported takings of £116 million, according to VoucherCodes.

Their research revealed that overall retailers and the leisure industry netted a colossal £865 million over the four weeks from the kick off on June 12.

It would have been more had England made it through to the second round; £1.3 billion was expected to hit British tills until the team flunked out.

Football fans splurged a gut-busting £335 million on food and drink thanks to World Cup Fever with sales of televisions and electrical also boosted.

VoucherCodes managing director Claire Davenport said: “Despite England’s early exit, the British spirit wasn’t squashed for long with fans splashing £865 million in retail stores and pubs during World Cup season.

“Retailers have scored as much as Germany, with £335 million alone spent on food and drink as Brits splash the cash to watch the games in style.”

Shops sold £35 million worth of souvenirs, £175 million in sportswear and £24 million worth of gardening goods.

It may not be my cup of tea, but there is no doubt the figures speak for themselves, there really is no underestimating the power of football.