Belgian filmmakers search for Islington man who cheered up country after defeat to England at 1990 World Cup

Laurence Penn in the audience of the Belgian TV show, 1990.

Laurence Penn in the audience of the Belgian TV show, 1990. - Credit: Archant

Filmmakers in Belgium are hoping to track down a cheeky Islington football fan who embarrassed his girlfriend live on TV after an England match in the 1990 World Cup.

Laurence Penn in the audience of the Belgian TV show, 1990.

Laurence Penn in the audience of the Belgian TV show, 1990. - Credit: Archant

The Three Lions had just beaten Belgium in the last minute of extra time after a memorable David Platt goal.

Laurence Penn and his Flemish girlfriend, whose name isn’t known, were sitting in the audience of a television show that aired the game live. Afterwards, the host started interviewing the audience.

Attempting to explain the sequence of events that for some reason captivated a nation, journalist Robbe Boon said: “The host asks for a reaction from the girlfriend after the match.

“She is very upset, crying and almost devastated because of the loss.

Laurence Penn in the audience of the Belgian TV show, 1990.

Laurence Penn in the audience of the Belgian TV show, 1990. - Credit: Archant


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“The host asks Penn if he wasn’t teasing her too much.

“Penn responds with: ‘I don’t know, I’ve got the car keys so I’ll be fine,’ and laughs a bit.

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“The girlfriend was shooting daggers. They were recognised for months after it aired.”

He added: “We are making a program about people who were on television. Laurence reacted in a funny way and the whole country witnessed this. We would love to talk to him about this experience.”

Laurence Penn in the audience of the Belgian TV show, 1990.

Laurence Penn in the audience of the Belgian TV show, 1990. - Credit: Archant

Are you Laurence? E-mail at the Gazette: sam.gelder@archant.co.uk.

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