1. Why you were looking
forward to going to the ground (or not as the case
This was Brentford’s first visit to the Broadfield
Stadium and, as a relatively local midweek
away-day, there was no way I would consider
missing out. A major reason I particularly looked
forward to this away game in particular is that it
is one of only two grounds in League One, the
other being our very own Griffin Park, where the
away section is a covered terrace. At Brentford we
have a proper ‘home end’, the Ealing Road terrace,
and it saddens me to see clubs where the
atmosphere has been lost among the seating.
2. How easy was your journey/finding the
A bit of a nightmare. I met my friend at Victoria
hoping to get the 17:44 to Crawley, which would
take around forty minutes. All trains to Crawley
had been cancelled. Luckily, however, my friend’s
Dad works at Gatwick Airport, so we hopped on the
Gatwick Express and got a lift to the ground at
the other end. The journey from Gatwick to the
ground took around twenty minutes and we were
there about three quarters of an hour before
3. What you did before the game pub/chippy… home
The club do not have a dedicated away ticket
office, so you have to walk round to the back of
the Main Stand to find the small ticket booth. The
home fans seemed friendly despite the very large,
and very vocal, away presence. Then we headed
straight into the stadium.
4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first
impressions of away end then other sides of the
The away fans are allocated the KRL stand behind
the goal, which also extends round the corner and
next to the West (Main) Stand. Teams with smaller
away followings will be given around half the end.
There are also around 200 seats available in the
temporary East Stand. I stood almost directly
behind the goal, where the best atmosphere was
created by the fantastic Bees away support (around
1,100 in a crowd of 3,700). The ground is small,
and still feels a bit ‘non-league’. With trees
visible behind the stands the ground has something
of a rural feel. The West Stand is an impressive
looking stand in front of which are the dugouts.
Opposite is the Bruce Winfield terrace, the home
end, which is virtually identical to the away end.
On the east side of the ground is a temporary
stand and, while it is covered, there are around
15 supporting pillars.
5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere,
stewards, pies, facilities etc.
I bought a burger inside the ground, which was
among the best I have had at any ground in the
country and was a reasonable £3. The game itself
was fantastic. We were awarded a penalty in the
first minute and the Crawley defender was
sent-off. Up stepped Clayton ‘Donaldinho’
Donaldson, to put it wide. However an excellent
strike from Sam Saunders and a Donaldson tap in
meant we went in 2-0 at half-time. The atmosphere
in the away end in the first half was one of
raucous celebration – surely even Brentford
couldn’t mess up a two-goal advantage against ten
men. The whole half just reinforced my opinion
that terracing automatically means a better
atmosphere. The Crawley fans seemed fairly
subdued, but it would unfair to judge them in a
match where they were up against it for so long.
The second half started in the same vein, with
some terrific banter going on with the Crawley
stewards. On the hour mark Adam Forshaw went over
in the box. Penalty! No, second yellow card for a
‘dive’ and it was 10 versus 10. Five minutes
later, they scored, so we had gone from possibly
being 3-0 up against ten to being 2-1 up with the
same number of players on the pitch. And there
were still 25 minutes left. Luckily, we held on to
secure a victory that was made even sweeter by the
news of several promotion rivals dropping points.
6. Comment on getting away from the ground after
1,200 West Londoners roared out into the Sussex
night and, despite some fairly provocative
chanting (you’re just a car park for Gatwick),
there was no trouble getting away from the ground.
We made the twenty-minute walk to the station
where we boarded a delayed train home.
7. Summary of overall thoughts of day out:
A vital three points that should have been a lot
easier than it was. We didn’t play particularly
well, but the atmosphere from the away fans was
among the best all season. Hopefully we will go
up, but that would mean missing out on this away
trip next season. I would definitely go back.