The Riverside - Middlesbrough FC
Saturday 5th October 2005
V Bolton, Premier League, 3pm
By Douglas Mulliner
1. Why you were
looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case
As I have friends who are Bolton fans in Boro we decided to go to the Bolton v Boro match. It was the first time I'd be visiting the Riverside and I was looking forward to seeing it as I'd not seen many of the 'next generation' of stadiums. The only thing that worried us was Bolton's recent form as we were in a relegation struggle at the time.
2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
The journey to Middlesbrough was straightforward. around two and a half hours from Bolton. We parked in the city centre next to the town hall (at least I think it was), some distance from the ground. It was around £3 to park there for the afternoon. The city centre is fairly compact and seemed friendly to away fans. We managed to find a signpost directing us towards the ground but they dried up after a while but we followed the crowds and managed to find it. An odd feature and a sign of Boro's industrial heritage is the approach to the ground. We passed many a bundle of pipes snaking around and we seemed to go through a lot of subways with heavy freight railways above us.
Near to the stadium we were stopped suddenly by the police with the rest of the crowd and expected to be searched but to our surprise a barrier came down and a train came trundling past on a level crossing. After a few minutes the barriers came up and we were on our way again. There were no signposts for the away end but instead you have to look for your turnstile number which involved us walking around most of the ground.
3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?
There are no pubs near the ground due to it being very isolated from the city. We passed a McDonalds before we entered the maze of subways but the queue was out of the door so we didn't bother. There are the usual burger vans dotted around the ground. The home and away fans mixed freely around the stadium with no trouble, but I put this down to there being no rivalry between us. Once inside the ground we got a nice pint of lager.
4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end
other sides of the ground?
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