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Old Trafford
Manchester United v
Premier League
Monday August 26th 2013, 8pm
Marcus Walker
(Chelsea fan)

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

Old Trafford is the biggest club stadium in England so naturally itís always an away day you look out for when the fixtures are released! This would be my third time to the ground as an away fan going with Chelsea every time.

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

We took the train from London Euston to Manchester Piccadilly which took a little over two hours so not too bad. From there we took a taxi to Salford Quays to find a pub before heading to the ground. The ground is huge and very impressive from the outside so naturally easy to spot.

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

Before the game we went to the Lime Bar in Salford Quays which was a mixture of Chelsea and Manchester United fans. There was a lot of chanting from the numerous travelling Chelsea fans and the Manchester United fans werenít impressed and a few even came over to tell the Chelsea fans to quieten down. The police all of a sudden popped out of nowhere to keep an eye on our fans which was a bit of a shock but they only intervened a couple of times. Manchester United v Chelsea is a bit of a rivalry nowadays so it was a bit hostile walking to the ground.

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

The ground from the outside looks very impressive. Itís huge, seating 80,000 fans and the exterior is well done. The away end is in the South East corner of the stadium where the maximum allocation is 3000. Chelsea had sold out all 3000 tickets so there was a large police presence outside the away end but itís easy to spot because of this! There was a lot of police and sniffer dogs too which was a bit of a shock but entrance wasnít too much of a hassle.

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

The game was a 0-0 for Mourinhoís first away game of the season at the home of the Champions and itís a result that all Chelsea fans would have taken prior to kick off. The atmosphere from our fans was brilliant with non stop chanting throughout. I expected a lot more of the United fans though especially the ones in the Stretford End. There was good banter between the two sets of fans and a couple of United fans were escorted out of the East Upper due to badgering from our away support. The stewards seemed friendly though. The facilities are good in the concourse and itís spacious. The queues for food and drink were very long so we didnít bother so we joined in with the chanting and bouncing fans in the concourse.

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

As it was an evening kick off we stayed overnight in Manchester. We headed straight back to the centre and took the tram from Old Trafford to Piccaddily station. There were long queues and it took a while. Both United and Chelsea fans were chanting at each other with a mixture of banter and hostility.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Overall it was a top away trip. The stadium is very good and very accommodating to travelling away fans. It would have been great to return to London with all 3 points but weíll take a point and move on.

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