Doncaster Rovers v Norwich City
Friday, January 30th 2009, 8pm
(Norwich City fan)
1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):
I had never been to Doncaster's stadium yet, and given it is a relatively new ground I was hoping it would be a nice place to visit.
2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking:
As I am at university in Sheffield, it was a straight-forward journey on the train costing only £3.10 return. The train station we were told was a fair distance from the ground, so we opted to get a taxi, with some other fans we met on the train, the taxi overall came to under £5.00, so it wasn't expensive at all.
3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?
We decided to go to the Beefeater pub, which is very near to the ground. This was a very friendly place, which accepted home and away fans with no problem. It had a good selection of alcoholic beverages. Although it was fairly busy as it seemed, it was the only pub near the ground, so it can get fairly packed inside. There is also your normal fast food places near here, (Mcdonalds... etc) so there are plenty of places to eat.
4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground:
When we first saw the ground we were quite impressed, although fairly small it looked really good, and the 'slanty' floodlights gave the ground a bit of identity. When we got inside we were impressed as well, the seating had good leg room and there was an excellent view of the pitch.
5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, toilets etc..
This was a Friday night game, which seemed to be an odd time for a match, but that had to be done because of the Donny races on the Saturday. Despite it being a Friday night there was a good following from my team Norwich over 1,800 had made the 3 hour plus, journey up on a Friday night. There was a good atmosphere in the away end with Norwich fans singing most of the match. The home fans were fairly quiet, but there was still some good banter between the fans during the match, and their seemed to be no problem with the stewards.
The match itself was a fairly nervy affair as this was between two sides near the bottom of the table, although both teams were on a good run, Doncaster had won their last four matches and we had just changed our manager and looked very much a rejuvenated side. During the first half team we had more possession, but could do little with it and went into the break 1-0 down. The second half started differently though and we should have equalised within the first minute of the restart only a good save from their keeper denied us. We did get a goal on the hour mark to make it 1-1, and that's how it finished thanks to a few good saves from our keeper, so all in all a good result.
Unfortunately we didn't sample any of the pies at the ground, but it looked like it was the standard pies and pasties you get at most grounds.
6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game
There seemed to be quite a lot of traffic problems leaving the ground as it looked like there was only one or two routes to get away. So we opted to walk back to the station which took about 20 minutes and somehow managed to find it, despite not really knowing where we were going. Unfortunately we had just missed one of our trains and had to wait an hour for another one, so we decided to go for a little walk and went to look at the shopping mall next to the station called Frenchgate, which although all the shops were closed at the time, looked very nice and is worth a visit.
7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out
A very enjoyable night out, good ground, friendly fans and decent match of football with a good result, so I would definitely recommend Doncaster as place to visit.
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