This Morning has found a suitably unique way to make World Cup predictions, and this time it was Alfie the Aplaca’s turn.
The furry fortune teller appeared on the ITV daytime show just hours before England and Wales kick off their Qatar 2022 campaigns against Iran and the USA at 1pm and 7pm respectively – and it’s not great news for fans hoping for a positive result.
Fairytale Farm’s Nick Laister insisted the oracle alpaca ‘always give you this knowing look’ hinting he knows ‘a little bit more than you do’, and he was optimistic about his chances to pick the winners in today’s fixtures.
‘He’s had a go. We’ve given him a test run, and he’s seemed to have predicted exactly the same. We’re fairly sure he knows what he’s doing,’ he added.
For Alfie’s attempt, he was faced with two feeding stations – each with a different flag – as Nick filled them with food and joked: ‘I don’t want to put him off, it’s all very scientific.’
England v Iran was up first, and Three Lions supporters might be worried about this afternoon’s game after seeing the alpaca head straight for the Iranian flag as Phillip Schofield shouted: ‘Don’t you dare!’
He went in three times for some food, and Holly Willoughby quipped: ‘So things aren’t looking great right now.’
Phil tried to look on the bright side, pointing out that there isn’t a ‘massive track record here’ for the predictions, and Wales fans will be hoping that’s the case after Alfie picked USA in their opening game.
Despite her co-star’s attempts to play down Alfie’s talents, Holly added: ‘The alpaca has spoken! Unfortunately, if he’s right, it’s going to be Iran to win, and USA.’
Despite the farmyard excitement, Phil admitted he isn’t feeling the same buzz this time round compared to previous tournaments, with the Qatar-based competition mired in controversy.
And just hours before today’s games, England, Belgium, Dutch, Swiss, Germany, Denmark and Wales released a joint statement confirming their captains won’t be wearing OneLove armbands, which was as a protest to highlight Qatar’s archaic homosexuality laws in the process
‘FIFA has been very clear that it will impose sporting sanctions if our captains wear the armbands on the field of play,’ the national federations said, noting they couldn’t put players ‘in a position where they could face sporting sanctions including bookings’.
Noting their disappointment, they continued: ‘We were prepared to pay fines that would normally apply to breaches of kit regulations and had a strong commitment to wearing the armband.’
This Morning airs weekdays at 10am on ITV1.