The tattoo might be a little premature, but at least the move has added a certain thrill to the tournament, and perhaps some extra incentive for the England team to score.
Still, it's a risk that even the most inked up individual is hesitant to take. We met with Rob Elliott from Liverpool, whose love for the England team is emblazoned over his body, in a vibrant tattoo montage. Though the year "2018" is not yet etched into his skin, you can bet your bottom dollar that if England wins, he might even consider a face tattoo.
Elliott has kindly agreed to give us a tour of his tattoos, most of which are tinted red, white and blue in honor of the Union Jack. He's adamant though that we don't take a full tour, however, as he warns that some of his "tats are inappropriate for public consumption." These will be left up to the readers' imagination.
England's Illustrated Man: This man's got everything from the Modfather to Rupert's Tower tattooed on his bod! pic.twitter.com/Qx2eeGGGZz— Maud Start (@Maud_SputnikUk) July 1, 2018
Elliott’s limbs are up for grabs, and they hold a veritable patchwork of English history. Starting with his right leg, Elliott commemorates the mod revival of the 70’s with a portrait of Paul Weller’s face. Also known as the "Modfather," the grinning Weller is amazingly like the actual frontman from The Jam. Though the Mod Revival was short-lived, its reputation has prevailed, and its influence reaches far beyond Elliott’s leg.
"That’s Paul Weller from The Jam, 'We are the Mods', Down in the Tube Station at Midnight."
It’s not surprising that Elliott idolizes Dixie Dean. Liverpool born and raised, Everton is Elliott’s home club. This fact has not been forgotten in his tattoo montage, as the Everton Football Club is proudly represented by an image of Rupert Tower. The famous Everton roundhouse is featured on the EFC badge, as it has been since 1938.
The actual building, Elliott explains, was historically used as a lock-up cell, used to hold minor criminals and drunks overnight before being taken before the magistrates. Now, the building is a must-see site for Everton fans. It’s also a popular tattoo, adorning the limbs of EFC fans across the world.
On Elliott’s upper body a slight sunburn from the Russian sunshine makes the Union Jack pop. A bulldog holding a shield, tinted with the national flag, stands in a field of roses looking up at Big Ben.
"This one is my favorite. Look at the time on Big Ben — eleven o’clock — ‘Lest we Forget’."
"Lest we Forget," eleven o’clock, symbolizes the hour of remembrance and commemoration for those soldiers lost in the First World War. From this section of Elliott’s illustrated body, it becomes clear that his patriotism stretches far beyond football.
Elliott’s patriotism is not exclusive. He states how his love for Britain actually works as a tool to meet other nations, giving this as the reason for bringing his son to the tournament.
"To show that it’s not all about us. It’s about everybody, supporting their teams, but, really, we’re coming together because of this. We all want to win but winning is not what makes a country great. It’s the people that make up the country who make it great."