toffeelady76: (Default)
toffeelady76 ([personal profile] toffeelady76) wrote2012-04-08 01:48 pm

football experiences part 3

QPR v Everton
Loftus Road stadium

Almost didn't go to this game at all. I had planned to go at the beginning of the season, but it transpired that there were limitated places and only on 29th Feb I was told there were extra tickets.

I got in the train from Harrow & Wealdstone station and got off at Harlesden. I waited for the 228 bus because my navigation system rocommended that route. I was as Loftus road soon enough while towards the end of my journey I had to listen to a moaner that believed too much attention was spent on broadcasting and taking an interest in football and it was all full of hooligans- charming!

I met the man from the supporters club on South Africa road and he gave me my ticket in exchange for a cheque.

I then went to see if I could find a toilet. I didn't, but I did buy a raspberry ribena and cadburys chocolate.I then walked along Uxbridge Road, found nothing of interest to me, but lost my bearings and wound up on a different road. This road was full of police and the reason was it was for away supporters. Anybody would think we cause trouble!

Went to into the ground. They had a big black cat mascot and tiger. I also spotted a rainbow in the pitch sprinklers. We scored the first goal and as my arms shot up in sheer joy, my pink and silver plastic bracelet was flung into the journalists on the ground below. After that QPR scored. I then realised I was sitting behind my work colleagues father, who didn't recognise me at all, but I remembered him!

I had thought about getting my bracelet back, but decided that as the area was segregated, probably best to forget it, it was not very expensive. There was also a squirrel on the pitch for several minutes causing me to burst out laughing while the other fans cursed the team for delaying the game because of the squirell.

After a disappointing second half full of stoppages and no more goals, I made my way back on the bus 260 this time, again alighting at Harlesden.

Surprising this is our local club only 6.2 miles from our home and closer to us than all the other London clubs.

FA cup 1/4 final
Everton v Sunderland
Goodison Park

I walked to Everton FC today. Used a sat nav so few problems getting to the ground from my hotel in West Derby. Got to my seat ok, nobody there when I arrived. I took some photos as my camera hadn't got a flat battery (for a change) and as the toffee girl came around, an Everton mint was chucked into the empty row in front of me. Anyhow, as kick-off approached, the seats began to fill and the man on my right asked me if I minded the swearing. I said I didn't care, though in the first half of the game did get pissed off at the levels of anger and noise of thousands of drunk scousers. Come second half I was just as bitter as the ref was blind and we kept pushing forward yet no goal came. Final score 1-1. Replay at Stadium of Light.

And to make things even more uncertain, when I got home I realised my ticket had a dodgy customer number, two didgets mixed up and the name Philip somebody or other. Interesting, but that Phils got my credits now!


Norwich v Everton

Carrow Road

This is the first away game I have been to outside London. I was really looking forward to going to Norwich, having never been and I wanted to see some of the town. I knew the Metropolitan line had no delays or engineering work from Wembley Park to Liverpool Street, but I chose to give myself plenty of time just incase something went wrong. I arrived at Liverpool Street National rail station an hour and a half early. This was still better than missing my train, and I chose to kill the time by reading a book.

When I received the meeting instructions from the supporters club, my letter told me to meet the group at the platform at the latest 10.30am as soon as the platform would be known. The board didn't show the platform until 10.25am. I rushed to the platform edge, only to find my fellow travellers from the supporters club had already met with the group leader and were going into the train without me! I had to run to the group leader and remind him I was on their list as he hadn't ticked me off.

The train journey to Norwich took just over two hours, and I passed my old haunts at the University of East London in Stratford. I also saw the new Olympic stadium from the train and it looked very impressive. The seats in hte train were very uncomfortable and I had very little room my bottom was squashed painfully between the two handles which were irremovable and my legs had very little space. Clearly the seats were designed for people smaller than myself! I listened to my ipod the whole journey as I find it hard to concentrate reading with background noise. Nobody talked to me.

When I got out at Norwich I wanted to look around the town and buy a drink. I love pubs but I am not very keen on enclosed spaces, so I got a big Smirnoff Ice from a Tesco express and srank it at the top of the castle gardens (not unlike the time I went to Liverpool and drank flavoured cider in Staley Park). After I had finished my drink, I walked to the cathedral which appeared to be closed, nevertheless I was glad to have seen the building. By the time I had walked around that it was time to head off to the stadium. I used my google navigation since I don't like talking to strangers and it's more fun than remembering directions.

When I got to Carrow Road, I walked the whole way around to look for the away stand. Such was the positioning of the Jarrod Stand that if I had turned left and not right, the stand would have been directly in front of me, never mind.

The stewards were very nice and told me where to go. I was one row from the very top of the away stand in row MM. During the game as my fellows were singing and cussing their rivals, I began to feel rather ill, though I still managed to cheer at Jelly's two goals.

I did manage to chat to a couple of Toffees at the game, one recognised me from my magazine article and another was just a drunk scoucer looking for solidarity. My illness continued and it got really bad on the way back in the train. When I waited for the group leader to let us in at Norwich, many passengers thought I was a station staff and asked me questions or showed me their tickets, I had to explain that I was not a station guard and move away in the end, as it was funny but not helping anybody!

The journey back was very uncomfortable and I was shivering all the way home. As much as I had wanted to sing all those songs.. Straquelersci, your name is too long, and Tony Hibbert, He'll score when he wants to and the other traditional songs, I just felt horrible in fact the group leader said he didn't blame me for not singing, but one of the lads asked why I wasn't singing and I told him Barry Horne is too old for me, I was ten when he played for Everton. In reality he was one of my Panini stickers I wanted along with my favorite Tony Cottee!

I got home about 9.10 pm. I was really desperate to get home and cursed every slow lift and delay in the train. I went straight to bed.

I don't regret going, I am glad I went. I just wish I had felt better.