Tamworth v Cambridge United
Saturday, August 22nd 2009, 3pm
Blue Square Premier
I was looking forward to going to The Lamb as it would be a new ground visited, number 26. Despite Tamworth having a made a reasonable start to the season and on a high from their promotion last season as Blue Square North Champions, I was hopeful we would pick up three points. The supporters coach left Cambridge at 11.30, and despite a traffic hold up on the A14 near Huntingdon, the journey was otherwise routine and arrived at the ground just before 2pm.
The home officials I encountered were friendly and seemed to reflect the impression I got of Tamworth being a welcoming club for away supporters; the programme seller upon entering the ground, steward who politely asked me to put a bottle cap in the bin when others may have made a big fuss about it (even though I was standing just in front of the bin when approached!) and the turnstile operator who probably would have allowed me entry into the game at a student price had I not stated I was an adult.
First impressions of the ground upon arrival wasn't inspiring, despite the welcome. Battleship grey painted metal forms most of the exterior on the car park side, but once inside it turns out to be a neat and tidy ground, albeit basic. Three of the four sides - including behind each goal are terraced; the United fans were housed at The Meadow Street End - a small, partly covered terrace which didn't go back very far, meaning that we were close to the action regardless of where we stood. The seating stand to the right looking from the away end comprised of about half a dozen rows of red seats runs from about level from the edge of the penalty area to a similar position at the other.
The game itself from a United perspective was poor. Tamworth hit the bar twice in the first 20 minutes, had two efforts cleared off the line in the second half but that aside passed the ball around like Barcelona without really hurting us. We could have snatched victory in stoppage time with Saah's header being cleared off the line but that would have been unjust to say the least. Getting away from the ground was simple enough, coach left just after 5pm and we arrived in Cambridge at 7. Despite our performance I was glad I attended the game.
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