Updated: June 23, 2016 6:00:27 am
He calls himself Gummi Ben and he’s becoming a cultish phenomenon of the European Championship.
Gudmundur Benediktsson’s wildly enthusiastic calls of Iceland’s goals for national television have been finding new fans worldwide as clips are shared on social media.
— Jeremy Vine (@theJeremyVine) 22 June 2016
On Wednesday, Gummi Ben broadcast an instant classic to describe Iceland’s stoppage-time goal to beat Austria 2-1.
“Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, we are winning this. We are in the round of 16,” Gummi Ben shouted in Icelandic from his position high up in the main stand at Stade de France.
“Never, ever, ever have I felt as good,” the former Iceland international player said. “Arnor Ingvi Traustason secured us the first European Championship victory. We have never lost, notice that, we have never lost.”
“Thanks for coming, Austria. Thanks for coming,” Benediktsson added.
While 10 percent of Iceland’s 333,000 population are estimated to have come to France, those back home are relying on Benediktsson.
Iceland’s players have given him every reason to reach fever pitch in his calls: a 1-1 draw after trailing against Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal, then another 1-1 draw from the heartbreak of a late own goal to let Hungary level the match.
Benediktsson scaled new heights Wednesday with Iceland’s first win on its tournament debut.
He should be back behind the microphone in Nice on Monday when Iceland plays England in the round of 16.
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