This was not the way it was supposed to end for England’s World Cup dreams. And fans gathered in London, even famous ones like Tottenham striker Peter Crouch, will find failure a bitter pill to swallow.
A post-mortem has begun already in an attempt to answer the all-important question. Why did a bid by the long-time favourites, backed by a certain David Beckham and a future king end up in the dustbin?
For many, British media claims of corruption in the voting process may have had something to do with it. Has FIFA punished England for the scandal?
“Certainly there was a great deal of upset, a strong negative reaction of their perception of what the English media was reporting,” London Mayor Boris Johnson told reporters.
A pitch invasion at an English match shortly before the announcement may not have helped, recalling the dark days of English football hooliganism. But some claim a decision was made weeks ago to boot England out.