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Alexandra Stadium
Crewe Alexandra v Walsall
Saturday, April 27th, 2013, 3pm
League One

  By Nathaniel Holland-Bright
(Walsall fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):
 
We Saddler's consider Crewe a bit of a derby in this League, as it is not too far away. It was also the last game of the season and as both teams were safe and had nothing to play for, we could relax, have a laugh and just enjoy the football, without worrying about the result.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
I took the train to Crewe as did many other Walsall fans. It was a quick and easy journey, with just one change of trains in Birmingham. Plus the Crewe railway station is only a few minutes from the Stadium.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?
 
As the train pulled into Crewe I could spot the stadium from the carriage window, so it didn't become a problem to find. I first went a small fish and chip shop called TJS and got my lunch there and then to the pub across the street called the Royal Hotel which had a sports bar. This where most of the visiting away fans were based having a pre match drink with a large projector and TV's showing the Man City vs West Ham match. Then I went to the Crewe club shop walking around to the main home fans area to go have a look around expecting a hostile response but their fans were very welcoming.

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

Very similarly built to our ground, not new but all seater and the Main Stand over looked all the other stands imposingly. We were allocated both the away stand and the family stand bringing a large following and the seating was good giving a great atmosphere for away fans.

Our Fans In the Ice Cream Van Stand

Ice Cream Van Stand Gresty
                  Road

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
The game was intense, end to end football with both goalkeepers being tested, with Crewe having their entire academy team fielded against us. It was a great match to watch. Crewe took the lead from a dubious penalty. Later they got a second, this time with fortunate offside decision going their way. Normally this would have quietened our mood, but with nothing to play for the Saddlers fans kept on singing. much to the surprise of the Crewe supporters. The Crewe fans were relatively quiet even with their drummer and we out-sung them throughout. The stewards were friendly and nice and didn't ever block the view of the game as some do. And the food was great however only two inbuilt food areas per stand with the large attendance it was a long wait for any food. Although it was good quality they ran out of product quickly.

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

Coaches were parked along the road for away fans in clear sight and a car park outside the away fans stand so anyone who came in car could also leave quickly. The exit gates were large and open making for an easy exit. The very short walk to the train station was quick and even the police helped us find the correct platform for the train back to Walsall.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
Overall even with a 2-0 loss, it was a fantastic day with locals being very friendly and the visiting supporters easily out singing the home fans so we revelled in the atmosphere we created. So overall I'll be definitely returning next season to Gresty road expecting more sound from the Crewe fans.


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