The London Monarchs won the inaugural World Bowl Sunday, beating the Barcelona Dragons 21-0 in the championship game of the World League of American Football.
Before a crowd of 61,946 at famed Wembley Stadium, where soccer gave way to cheerleaders and a marching band, London scored all its points in the first half. Stan Gelbaugh threw two touchdown passes and Dan Crossman returned an interception for the other score.The Monarchs avenged their only loss of the season - a 20-17 defeat to the Dragons two weeks ago at Wembley. This time, the Monarchs played excellent defense.
"Our defense really wanted a shutout so they were going after it," London Coach Larry Keenan said. "We played very well on defense. We gave up a few yards, but today was really a complete team victory."
The Monarchs opened the scoring in the closing seconds of the first quarter on Gelbaugh's 59-yard pass to John Horton. The other TD pass was to Judd Garrett. British-born kicker Phil Alexander converted all the extra points.
"It just wasn't our day," Barcelona Coach Jack Bicknell said.
The Monarchs advanced to the World Bowl last week with a 42-26 victory over the New York-New Jersey Knights. Barcelona defeated the Birmingham Fire 10-3.
London, 10-1, and Barcelona, 9-2, had the league's best regular-season records.
"World League Football, while possibly not as good as the National Football League, is still better than college teams in America," Bicknell said. "It's somewhere between NFL standard and university standard football."
The game began with the rock band the Moody Blues performing "God Save the Queen."