No Habs game this weekend? No problem, as Montrealers flock to bars for EuroCup
MONTREAL -- The buzz around town might be all about the Montreal Canadiens' berth in the Stanley Cup Finals, but with no games scheduled until Monday, plenty of people were still getting their sports fill with the EuroCup.
On a rainy Saturday, bars were filled with football fans downing pints and cheering on their teams.
“It's fantastic that Wales actually made it through this final 16 because that was unexpected,” said Sheree Mould. “Here we are, playing against Denmark.”
While Wales lost, Mould said that it was still worth it if only to come together with other soccer fans after the pandemic cancelled last year's tournament.
“We were all looking forward to the EuroCup last year, so we're happy we have it this year and can celebrate inside, in a pub again, and watch the game.”
Denmark fans have had their own rough go after Christian Eriksen suffered cardiac arrest during an earlier game.
“You know, when you come to soccer, it's not just about representing your country; it's pride, it's in the blood,” said fan Thor Danielsen. “It's really important to be there and encourage your roots, where you're from.”
For bar owners, the Habs' unexpectedly deep playoff run has been a big relief, after the pandemic took a toll over the past year. The EuroCup has given them even more to look forward to.
“It's been a long year-and-a-half. This is great for our industry, great for us here, specifically, because we are into football and obviously the Canadiens... But it's good in general for the city. The energy, you can totally feel the difference,” said Burgundy Lion co-owner Paul Desbaillets. “July is around the corner, there's the summer vibe, the Euros, the Habs. In total, you can see, you can feel everyone's energy.”