Electric pub atmosphere in Swansea as revellers go cup final crazy
AS the football world watched Swansea City canter to victory, the atmosphere in Swansea city centre pubs was nothing less than electric.
Locals began cramming into pubs and bars in Wind Street and across the city sometime before the match.
The feeling was tense yet excited in anticipation of the 4pm kick-off.
One of the bars, Ice, was no exception.
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And by 4.10pm nothing had changed.
With eyes glued to the bar's many screens, and staff rushed off their feet refilling drinks, the atmosphere remained somewhat hushed and tense.
Five minutes later, Ice erupted as the Swans were ahead. Michu's shot was parried into Nathan Dyer's path, and he slid home. Arms hit the air and the supporters screamed. The replay was celebrated almost as much as the goal itself, as if to reaffirm that the Swans had a League Cup final lead.
A couple of excited shouts followed as Swansea seized control. "Come on ref!" one fan shouted as Angel Rangel was denied a penalty, before Leon Britton shot wide. But the fans did not have to wait long to go crazy once again.
Michu's 39th minute angled shot brought another roar and whistles of delight. Hands pointed to the screens at his customary celebration, with some fans joining in with the Spanish goal scorer.
There was excited chatter at half time with Swans fans content at 2-0 up. The pre-match nerves had seemingly gone, with Bradford posing little threat.
And no sooner had the second half started, Swansea's third goal arrived. Nathan Dyer brought the biggest roar yet, and one man's shout of "Come on!" could be made out from within the delighted crowd. He knew, like the rest of them, Swansea had probably just sealed the League Cup.
Eight minutes later, they had won it.
A moment's suspense came as Dyer was felled by Bradford keeper Matt Duke. The referee pointed to the spot, and the vocal Ice bar crowd agreed. Duke was dismissed and De Guzman scored. The spectators really did know the game was won then.
Elated fans enjoyed the last 30 minutes. They broke out in spontaneous choruses of Hymns and Arias, and there were odd shouts by the die-hard fans among the calming crowd. At 4-0 up the Ice bar was happy, and people didn't even seem to notice Bradford's only shot on target in the 87th minute.
The three minutes of added time provided the cherry on top of the cake, with De Guzman firing home for the fifth goal.
The goal, and the final whistle, were greeted with a roar of elation from the crowd, and a chant of "Europe here we come."
As Leighton Payne, 39, of Landore, said: "It's just awesome for the city, it puts us on the map. It's amazing to think that Swansea could play in Milan or Madrid next year."
Daniel Bowden, 20, of Townhill, added: "We were bottom of Division 3 10 years ago and nearly bankrupt. Now we are cup champions and going into Europe. It's brilliant."
Another fan, Paul James, 40, who has supported Swansea for 25 years, said: "The way Swansea have played football all through the divisions is fantastic, and now they can show the world just how good they are."