For the many England supporters watching the match on Friday night with their heads shaking in disbelief, 32 year-old mortgage broker, Pavlos Joseph, is something of a hero.
This is the man from Crystal Palace who has come to the nation’s attention after he reportedly stumbled into the England players’ dressing room whilst looking for a toilet, before haranguing the team about their dismal performance in the 0-0 draw with Algeria.
On Sunday the mortgage broker was arrested at his hotel and appeared in a Cape Town court charged with trespassing. Looking shaken and surrounded by armed policemen, he was bailed for £45 but banned from attending future World Cup matches.
According to new reports, David Beckham may be called as a defence witness for Mr Joseph in his trial for breaking two laws, which have been specially drawn up for the World Cup.
Following the disappointing draw between England and Algeria on Friday night, it has been reported that Mr Joseph accidentally wandered into the team’s dressing room and came face to face with David Beckham.
The broker claims that, when asked who he was, he said: “I’m Pavlos and I actually need the toilet.”
He told newspaper The Mirror that he then said to Beckham: “David, we’ve spent a lot of money getting here. This is a disgrace. What are you going to do about it?”
Turning to the other players he apparently said: “That was woeful and not good enough.”
David Beckham has since played down the incident, speaking at a FA reception in Johannesburg, he said: “Obviously it has been blown out of all proportion… The actual fan literally just walked in very casually and just said something to me and then walked out.
“There was no scuffle; there was no aggression at all.”
Mr Joseph is a senior mortgage consultant at London brokerage, Vista Finance, based in Westow Hill. No one at the firm was available to comment.
His family have spoken out however, saying they fear that he is being made a scapegoat by embarrassed South African authorities.
Mr Joseph’s trial is likely to begin this Friday. His passport has been confiscated and he has been told that he could face a year in jail, and at the very least, a hefty fine for the trespassing offence.
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