The US President was to blame for all the ills of the world (cup) dream, says Alan Perrott.

There's a moment, after everything has gone to hell, when you shift from furious to quietly resigned. If still furious.

Our plan was simple. Fly from London to Lisbon, arriving three hours before the World Cup final kicks off and find somewhere cool to watch.

Finances dictated we'd be flying Ryanair from Stansted Airport. No, don't laugh, we knew their reputations, so we arrived way early.


First hurdle: The online check-in system was down.

No matter, we had a few hours so we queued, got to the front and were re-directed to customer services, which was dealing with everything from refunds and flight changes to moron Americans and everyone else who hadn't been able to check-in online.

After 30 minutes we overhear a conversation. Non-EU punters had to queue separately.

Eh? First we'd heard. No matter, that queue was shorter.

One from the front and, inexplicably, the person we wanted to talk to shifts seats from our queue to the head of the endless queue next to us. We were then directed to barge into the front.

Cue the arrival of nine flustered and multi-generational Mongolians with slim to no English and a mountain of luggage. Time is ticking away.

By the time we barge into the queue ourselves a rather large German chap had wound himself into quite the lather. "Sorry, sorry, not our fault, just following orders" etc and so on.

Once done we rush to our gate."Ryanair would like to apologise to customers flying to Lisbon as your flight has been delayed."


Mutter mutter.

Forty minutes later and 40 minutes closer to kick-off, we board, taxi and stop.

"Ryanair would like to apologise … our take off has been delayed for 40 minutes."

What? Why?

After 30 minutes the bar is opened, never a good sign. It's also stinking hot, I'm sitting next to a dude with a cold and time is still ticking away.

A guy across the aisle beckons to one of the crew, "what's going on?"

Trump is leaving London and all flights are on hold. Can I hate that man any more?

Forty minutes becomes an hour, then an hour and a half, and ticks over to two hours when the bar is closed and we're away. New calculations, okay, we'll miss kick-off but we'll maybe see the second half.

Wheels are down and we're approaching Lisbon airport. Sweet. Then the engines roar again and up we go, bloody Trump has caused a backlog of landings all over Europe.

And all the time my neighbour's cold is getting worse. I hate this man too.

We finally land, along with three other flights, and descend on passport control. There are only two officers on duty and a flustered trainee controlling the crowd. The rest are probably out the back watching the game. Bastards.

My remaining hope is extra time — and that evaporates when sick boy updates the score. I hope he gets plague.

Okay, whatever, we get through and head off to get our luggage. Bags are pouring out, so many that they're clogging the carousel. It's odd, everyone from our flight is there, but not one bag has been picked up. We grab a bag for a look-see. That's not our flight number.

And there is not one airport worker in the entire terminal until one poor bugger in a hi-viz vest is pounced upon. He leaves promising to find out what's happened and is never seen again. The same thing happens with the next bloke.

Then someone arrives clutching a protective clipboard. Our luggage has been sent to the wrong terminal. We step back as the owners of this lot of bags swarm over us.

Eventually — five-and-a-half hours late — we leave the terminal to find hundreds of people in the solitary queue for taxis. Just to rub it in, one driver gets out, leaves his taxi straddling two lanes, and everything grinds to a halt.

Now I'm sure there's a message here, something like "shit not only happens, it keeps on happening", but I blame Trump, so I'm running with: "lock him up". Kinda catchy, innit?