No matter how big the occasion – and it doesn’t get much bigger than a World Cup quarter-final penalty shoot-out – some people just aren’t into football.
A video filmed on what’s thought to be an Emirates flight yesterday captured the moment Australia’s women’s football team booked their place in the semi-finals of the tournament, with every screen in the cabin tuned into the epic penalty shoot-out – except for one, that is.
Shared on Twitter and viewed more than 19.8million times, the clip shows how one passenger watched a Lord of the Rings movie instead, seemingly oblivious to the whooping and cheering going on around him – and much more focused on Gandalf.
Many on social media said they too would have picked the J R Tolkien’s tale over the drama playing out at Brisbane‘s Suncorp Stadium – despite it being an historic victory for the Matildas.
Glued: While most passenger in this flight cabin, thought to be an Emirates plane, couldn’t take their eyes off Australia’s tense match against France for a World Cup semi-final place yesterday – there was one viewer who opted for another choice
In the midst of the Matildas battle was the sight of Ian McKellen’s Gandalf from The Lord of the Rings trilogy
One wrote: ‘Sorry, but the lord of the rings a million times. :)’
Another added: ‘And one random watching Lord of the Rings. Nice one.’
Another joked: ‘The whole plane cheering right at the moment when Frodo wakes up after destroying the ring and he sees his friends and his burden is finally lifted… I’m absolutely touched.’
One person wasn’t quite so happy, penning: ‘UnAustralian, deny them entry. To be seen on next episode of Border Security.’
The Matildas made history by reaching the semi-finals of the Women’s World Cup for the first time after beating France (0-0) 7-6 on penalties in the longest shootout in the history of the tournament.
Mackenzie Arnold made three saves before Cortnee Vine converted the winning spot-kick to seal the quarter-final victory in front of 49,461 screaming fans at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium.
The Matildas will now play the Lionesses in next Wednesday’s semi-final at Stadium Australia in Sydney.
After France’s Vicki Becho hit the post at 6-6, Vine coolly drilled her penalty into the bottom corner to send Suncorp Stadium into ecstasy.
Mackenzie Arnold made three saves and missed a penalty herself in the 20-penalty shootout.
That included denying Kenza Dali, being ruled to have come off her line, only to then save the midfielder’s second attempt.
The moment the Matildas finally grasped victory – plane passengers were seen cheering as Australia came through
After the game, Sam Kerr said the Matildas wanted to ‘change football in this country forever’ – and they’ve done exactly that regardless of what the rest of the tournament holds
Mackenzie Arnold (in black jersey) is swamped by her teammates after Cortnee Vine’s shot gave Australia a sporting memory that will never be forgotten
Steph Catley and Clare Hunt were both denied by French goalkeeper Solene Durand, who was substituted in for the shootout.
It followed a dramatic 120 minutes where both teams had chances to win it.
Kadidiatou Diani fired a warning shot in the eighth minute, Maelle Lakrar blasted a tap-in over the bar in the 12th minute while Arnold also denied Eugenie Le Sommer and Lakrar in the 28th and 32nd minutes.
Sam Kerr’s reaction says it all after the Matildas survived a penalty shootout that stretched to a record 20 shots to overcome France and make their first tournament semifinal ever
But Fowler was denied by a heroic block from France right-back Elisa De Almedia in the 41st minute, then goalkeeper Pauline Peyraud-Magnin four minutes later.
Kerr came on in the 55th minute and a minute later, burst forward and worked the ball to Hayley Raso, whose long-range effort was brilliantly denied by Peyraud-Magnin.
Neither team could find an opening from there and the game went into extra-time.
France skipper Wendie Renard headed home in the 100th minute but the goal was disallowed when it was ruled she had fouled Caitlin Foord in the build-up.
Vine toe-poked a difficult chance wide five minutes later while Arnold made a huge save to deny Vicki Becho in the 107th minute.
From there the rest was history.