What an effort! Fan conjures up a table ‘stadium’ in garden

The School Council and Caroline Dinenage MP at the opening of the new library at Crofton Anne Dale Junior School, Stubbington. Picture: Chris Moorhouse

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WHILE thousands of football fans will be roaring at their televisions over the next month, one supporter will be reliving the drama on a pitch of his own making.

Iain-Paul Hutton has made a life-size human table football pitch in his back garden in order to celebrate the European Championships.

Iain-Paul Hutton outside the full-size table football 'stadium' in his garden

Iain-Paul Hutton outside the full-size table football 'stadium' in his garden

The 39-year-old ground worker spent more than 60 hours crafting his dream by himself – a fully laid-out artificial grass pitch with timber walls and foam patches on six scaffolding bars for 12 eager players to grip while they play.

The pitch is enclosed in a ‘stadium’ held up by scaffolding with flags of the championship’s competing teams surrounding the ‘arena’ which is 4m wide and 9m long.

A marquee lies next to the artificial grass pitch which is complete with a 55-inch widescreen television to complete the in-game experience for Iain’s family and friends.

Father-of-two Iain said: ‘I had spotted a similar idea on Facebook so I decided to celebrate the Euros in the best way I could think of.

‘I don’t follow a team in England but I absolutely love it when we get a big tournament and the chance to cheer on the Three Lions.

‘I just love that we can get so passionate about it and celebrate it with parties.’

The project was completed a week ahead of the championships’ opening game on Friday which saw tournament hosts France record a late 2-1 victory over Romania.

Iain, from Portchester, unveiled his creation in front of dozens of friends and family at a party for England’s opening game on Saturday against Russia which was complete with a mini-bar and a bouncy castle.

While the game saw England concede a late goal to be held to a 1-1 draw, Ian’s partygoers were having a ball of a time in his pioneering creation.

He added: ‘I got such great feedback from friends that came down to the party.

‘People didn’t start leaving until 4am the next morning so I guess you could say that the table went down a storm.

‘I was told that I’ve totally outdone myself with it and I love that because it gives me such a good buzz to show that all that hard work was worth it.

‘We’re going to keep it going into the end, let’s hope England reach the final.’