England U-17 Football team celebrate their country's maiden U17 World Cup Image: AFP
England's remarkable comeback after going two goals down to eventually beat Spain 5-2 and clinch the FIFA U-17 World Cup at a packed Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan in Kolkata was not only the perfect advert for the future of football globally but was also a historic final of many firsts.
Over 66,684 spectators descended on the Salt Lake Stadium to see England lift their maiden U-17 World Cup trophy in the first-ever all-European final in the history of the tournament.
And even before the final got underway, the tournament had already earned the distinction of the most-attended U-17 World Cup in history- quite an achievement for the first-ever major FIFA event on Indian soil.
After Brazil fought Mali in the third-place clash ahead of the mega-final between England and Spain, the total number of spectators who turned up at the six host venues across the country went past the earlier record attendance of 1,230,976 set in the first edition of the tournament in China, 1985.
With 56,432 people watching the game at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan, the total attendance of the World Cup reached 1,280,459.
A figure of 6,949 needed to be breached before the start of the tie to break the record.
The 2011 edition in Mexico had seen a turnout of 1,002,314 spectators, becoming the third to boast a total attendance in excess of a million.
A 66,000+ crowd in the final reinforced the numbers some more and the fans were treated to a scintillating match-up to mark the occasion in every way possible.
Brilliant counter-attacking display saw Spain take the early initiative, thanks to a first-half brace by Sergio Gomes (10th, 31st minutes).
The England boys showed immense character and kept on the pressure with some classic wing play and the efforts finally bore fruit in form of Rhian Brewster's 44th-minute header to take the young Three Lions into half-time with the score reading 2-1.
Propelled by their late first-half goal, the English contingent upped the ante in the second half and the Spanish armada crumbled in front of the English power and pace.
England scored four times in the final half through Morgan Gibbs White (58th minute), Phil Foden (69th, 88th minute) and Marc Guehi (84th minute).
The tournament will also go down as the highest scoring FIFA U17 World Cup of all-times and also as the one with the highest scoring final till date.
The special game prompted a special celebration on and off the field and the euphoria of Steve Cooper's boys' magical night under Kolkata lights resonated in England as well, with senior team behemoths like Wayne Rooney, Harry Kane and others joining the celebration on Twitter.