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St Andrews
Birmingham City v Wolverhampton Wanderers

Championship League
Monday, April 1st, 2013, 3pm
Jack Stanley
(Wolves fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

It was a West Midlands derby, and we were on a decent run of form leading up to the game having won three out of the last four in what had been a disastrous season for the club.

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

I live in Worcester which is about a 30 minute drive from Birmingham, so I decided to drive rather than mess about with the trains for once. Of course the only negative of this being that I could only have one drink but that didn't matter too much. We left at about 1:15pm and got to our parking spot in an estate in Small Heath at around five to two. The estate was only a 10 min walk to the ground thankfully.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

Well we arrived at the ground at about 2:15ish and went straight through the away gate and into the away stand. The Chelsea-Man Utd FA cup game was on the TV's inside the stand and while we were watching that, I grabbed a cheese burger which didn't cost too much along with a pint of Carling. I didn't witness any trouble before the game, although to be fair we were only given around 1,650 tickets for the game after the police reduced it. Also trains weren't running from Wolverhampton to Birmingham so most supporters would have drove or used the supporters' coaches.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

I've been to St. Andrews before a few times and it's actually bigger than you think. It holds 30,009 and when looking at it on TV it looks smaller than that. Three of the stands are nice inside the ground, however the Main Stand on one side of the pitch is old and tatty, and looks quite small despite it being two tiered, they could do with redeveloping this. The away end is situated in the Gil Merrick stand (behind one of the goals) in the lower tier. We were given about half of the lower tier, and there were a few Blues fans on the other side of the divider, as well as a couple above us in the smaller upper tier.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

It had been a disastrous season for us, and we were in real threat of a second successive relegation even though our form had lifted recently, winning three out of the last four games. Blues had also experienced a difficult campaign, although their form had risen miraculously since the end of February and they were no longer hovering dangerously above the relegation zone, instead that was now us. So therefore I was expecting a really tough game and if I'm being honest, I thought we'd lose. First 10 mins they were all over us and we looked nervy. But we managed to settle into the game, and unexpectedly stormed into a 0-3 lead at half-time. The funny thing about being a Wolves fan, is that even though we were 3-0 up at half time, the game still felt far from over. Blues were awarded a pen early in the second half and I was thinking 'here we go'. Blues did have a few good chances throughout the second half, but we looked to have weathered the storm and hold on for the win. But in the 95th minute, they were awarded another pen which they scored to make it 2-3. Just a minute later they were awarded a free-kick just outside the corner of the box in a very dangerous position, and I thought that they were going to score. Thankfully we managed to clear it and the whistle went. What a great win it was.

As always, the atmosphere from our fans was excellent even though there was only 1,623 of us. There wasn't a lot of noise coming from the home end surprise surprise, although they did sing a couple of songs after they made it 1-3 and lifted their noise.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

We left the stand and walked out of the away gate onto Cattell Road, where hundreds of Blues fans were walking past. We managed to keep our heads down and walk through the crowd and back to the car. I'm surprised the police didn't keep us in the ground afterwards or blocked off the away gate outside the ground to stop us walking onto Cattell Road.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A very good day out and a very good result for us. Also love winning a local derby! 


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