Carlsberg Old Lions in Dream Team

Carlsberg is promoting its connection with the 2006 FIFA World Cup with a Dream Team promotion featuring the veteran British soccer players as a pub team. The three minute television commercial is being passed around the UK as viral clip known as the Old Lion. The Carlsberg TV Ad begins with football players preparing for the day with coffee, uniform preparation. A light-humoured team is gathered together in the back of a white van on its way to the soccer field. Peter Beardsley travels by bicycle.

Carlsberg Veterans in changing rooms

In the changing rooms the veteran team prepare for the game, with the encouraging words of manager, Bobby Robson. Those who know their British soccer history would recognise the players as Peter Shilton (1), Des Walker (2), Terry Butcher (3), Jack Charlton (4), Stuart Pearce (5), Peter Reid (6), Brian Robson (7), Alan Ball (8), Bobby Charlton (9), Peter Beardsley (10), and Chris Waddle (11). Stuart Pearce answers his mobile phone during the pep talk, saying it’s his mum. The veterans, in their white jerseys, run out on to the field to face the team from the Dog and Duck pub, who are in black and yellow. Five goals are scored by the veterans but Charles is rebuked for shirt pulling, costing his side a penalty. However the goalie saves the day. Finally the match is over. The veterans celebrate their victory at The Old Lion pub. The voiceover: “Carlsberg don’t do pub teams, but if they did they would probably did, they’d probably be the best pub team in the world.” The tagline, “Carlsberg – probably the best lager in the world”, is accompanied by a link to Click on the image below to play the video.

Old Lions site is designated for people over the age of 18 and is Flash driven. Also featured on the site are excerpts from the ad, the TV ad outtakes. Carlsberg appear to be putting their money on England beating Paraguay, Trinidad and Tobago and Sweden in the World Cup this year. Viewers are invited to enter the Dream Team competition.


The Carlsberg Old Lions campaign was developed at advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi UK by creatives Dave Henderson and Richard Denney and producers Mana Franzini and Jennifer Kennedy.

The Carlsberg TV ads were directed by Chris Palmer at Gorgeous with producer Robert Smythe and director of photography Ian Foster.

Editing was done at The Quarry by Paul Watts.

Post production was done at The Mill by producer Gemma Smith, Lead Flame Neil Davis, Flame assist Mark Payne, with support from Jay Bandlish, Adam Grint and Richard Betts, with TK by Seamus O’Kane.

The soccer game was shot over two days in Dagenham. The Dog and Duck team were played by staff from Gorgeous, Tom Carty, Spencer Dodd, Ben Lyle and Michael from IT, along with Ornette Spencely from Partizan, and Tony Brignall’s son-in-law Billy.