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Last Updated: Saturday, 1 July 2006, 14:48 GMT 15:48 UK
Build-up to England v Portugal
All the pre-match build-up from the day of England's quarter-final against Portugal in Gelsenkirchen.


1403 BST: "Is anyone watching this game in Benin, West Africa? This is not the time or place to be so far away from home - I've been listening to New Order's World in Motion on my minidisc all morning as my only source of patriotic comfort.

"I'm watching it with a bunch of French guys so I can't wait to see us get through and the Brazilians to knock them out - what a night it will be! 2-0, Stevie G brace. Come on England!"
Fowlergod11 on the 606 messageboards.

1320 BST: "On a day like today you look for those vital signs and omens to back your flimsy theory that it will be an England win - even in your food.

"The English media's packed lunch contains passion fruit - presumably to ensure you are fired up for the occasion - and perhaps more ominously a miniature of the hard stuff, in this case vodka.

"Might have come in handy in those vital moments before a penalty shoot-out, but I decided it was best left back at my hotel."
BBC Sport's chief football writer Phil McNulty in Gelsenkirchen.

1243 BST: "I'm so nervous! I live in Switzerland and there are so many Portuguese it's insane. Every time they have won a match this World Cup, the streets get flooded with them. I hope today is different. I think England will turn it on and I fancy a 2-1 win - Rooney and Beckham for England. Come on England!"
Darth Roeder NUFC on the 606 messageboards.

1220 BST: "There's just under four hours to kick-off and the media centre at Gelsenkirchen is already populated by hundreds of reporters and television crews from around the world.

"Outside the stadium is also already busy, with the usual number of England fans flooding the open areas around this state-of-the-art AufSchalke Arena."
BBC Sport's chief football writer Phil McNulty in Gelsenkirchen.

1215 BST: "England's Gary Neville is expected to play and Owen Hargreaves will move into the holding position with Wayne Rooney up front on his own in a 4-5-1 system. I think Cristiano Ronaldo will play for Portugal."
Reporter Garth Crooks on BBC's Football Focus.

1209 BST: "I will be watching the match from the USA in Tacoma, near Seattle. It's the early hours here, the match starts here at 8am. I cannot sleep, I am so excited, my nerves are in tatters and the locals already think I am nuts after my screaming and hollering during our previous matches. Come on boys, do me proud!"
banditdan66 on the 606 messageboards.

1145 BST: "We are very confident. Everyone is really excited and has forgotten all their worries. I think it's going to be 2-1 to Portugal."
Portuguese fan Paula Sa Pereira, Lisbon

1135 BST: Headingley is planning to show key moments from the England v Portugal game on their screens during the one-day cricket international.

1120 BST: It's 'Bah Humbug' at Wimbledon. The tennis tournament organisers will not show England's match on their screens. Visitors carrying a flag measuring more than 2ft long or 2ft wide will have it confiscated.

"We shall try to let people know the scores of the matches via the general information system," said Ian Ritchie, chief executive of the All England Club.

1105 BST: "I'll be at work all day! I came in at 8am so I that could leave at 4pm and catch most of the match. I can't wait - I reckon Rooney is going to light up the match and prove to be the difference between the two team.
KomebaK_Kingz on the 606 messageboards.

1032 BST: "I'm going to be watching in Sydney, Australia, and I am far too excited already - trying to pace myself so I don't fall asleep at 11pm. Go England! I have a good feeling about today's match."
ozvillain on the 606 messageboards.

1020 BST: 1020 BST: "The white lines are being painted and the goals are going to be put up soon in this very impressive stadium. There are four giant tunnels that will pump out cold air during the match, so there shouldn't be a problem with the heat."
BBC News 24's James Pearce inside the AufShchalke Arena.

1005 BST: Our very own Fletch and Ricco are hoping to get their camper van, Svan, to Gelsenkirchen in time for the England match. Find out if they make it.

1005 BST: "I watched England train under the roof at Gelsenkirchen, and the temperature was noticeably cooler inside the vast arena than outside in the sunshine. It should suit England perfectly, although Portugal will not be unhappy either.

"England's players looked suitably impressed and looked like they couldn't wait for today's game to start, particularly an animated Gary Neville."
BBC Sport's chief football writer Phil McNulty in Gelsenkirchen.

0955 BST: "Our supporters (England) will be spread over the region rather than being in one area. I think that's a good thing because it will avoid the scenes we saw in Stuttgart, with that very focal point on the steps outside the main fan park."
Assistant Chief Constable Stephen Thomas in Gelsenkirchen.

0940 BST: Although the roof will be covered at the AufShchalke Arena which will aid the players, the fans outside will feel the intensity of the heat with temperatures set to hit 30C.

0915 BST: "England's players will wake up to another glorious morning in Germany, although it looks like the nation is suffering a collective hangover after seeing off Argentina in the quarter-final.

"Sven-Goran Eriksson held a briefing with the English media after his televised press conference in Gelsenkirchen - and I have never seen or heard him more confident.

"Some might call it wild optimism after England's performances, but I honestly believe Eriksson is convinced his side will win the World Cup... we'll find out soon enough."
BBC Sport's chief football writer Phil McNulty in Gelsenkirchen.

0908 BST: "All around the city centre they have big screens and other forms of entertainment. The England and Portuguese fans will be very well looked after."
BBC News 24 reporter Chris Hollins in Gelsenkirchen.

0855 BST: "This is the game that will ultimately define the Sven-Goran Eriksson era."
BBC Radio Five Live football correspondent Mike Ingham.

0830 BST: "I will be at the match in Gelsenkirchen against Portugal and I will be happy to meet with the English team."
Fifa president Sepp Blatter on BBC Radio Five Live.

0820 BST: Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho believes Michael Carrick is the key to England beating Portugal.

"England are much more compact and solid with Carrick and this, in my opinion, is the way to play in difficult matches," he said.


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