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St Andrews
Birmingham City v
Championship Play Off 2nd Leg
Wednesday, May 9th, 2012, 7.45pm
Michelle-Louise Burrows
(Blackpool fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):
Play-Off Semi-Final second leg.  Wembley on the horizon.  Pool 1-0 up from the first leg...

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

Took the supporter's coach from Bloomfield Road which went straight to St Andrew's without stopping.  Very easy but considering we ended up arriving in Birmingham two hours before kick-off, then we could have stopped off to a rest break.
3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

Needed the toilet pretty badly so nipped into the Morrisons around the corner.  Got myself a burger from the stand opposite and chatted to a few home fans.  A pretty friendly bunch, it has to be said and interviews for local media in the West Midlands and the Granada region.
4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

Impressed.  Seriously impressed.  It reminded me a bit of Goodison with the obstructed views.  The old Main Stand though could do with demolishing and linking to the rest of the ground so it could really be a stadium to behold.
5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

Stewarding and Police were very good.  Had a lovely chat with them before the match.  Not too impressed with the facilities though, too small for a club the size of Birmingham and there was a bit of grumbling from us in Tangerine when they ran out of beer.  The atmosphere itself was superb.  30,000 Zulu really make St Andrew's a sight to behold, especially when they get behind their team.  We managed to silence them however through Steven Dobbie (his goal had to be checked on the big screen to the left of us because we weren't sure if it had gone in. There was a seconds pause then an eruption from all those in tangerine) and Matty Phillips before Zigic, despite being a mile offside got Blues back into the game.  However, when Curtis Davies got the equaliser on the night, I swear to God you could have heard the noise back in Blackpool! However, Birmingham strangely didn't threaten much after that and we comfortably held on to go to Wembley again.  Cue party time in the Lower Gil Merrick Stand!
6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Very easy. Back to the supporters coach jubilant at booking another trip to Wembley.  Obligatory interview with TV and radio and back on the coach.  Back in Blackpool just after midnight.
7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

What a fantastic evening! Pool through to Wembley yet again but what a superb ground and support Birmingham have. For me, they are a proper club with proper fans - the People's Club of the Second City.

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