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St James' Park
Newcastle United v Manchester United
Monday 1st January 2007, 5.15pm
Premier League
By Gareth Carter
(Manchester United fan)

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

Well a trip up to a freezing cold Newcastle on New Years day might not have been everyone's was of celebrating the new year but for 3,500 United Fans it was prefect. Travelling away with United is always superb and your guaranteed true united fans and a great atmosphere, this was no exception. Newcastle is one of my favourite away games. We have a decent record up at St James Park.

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

We got the 9.30 train from Manchester Piccadilly to York and then changed at York to Newcastle after a 15 minute wait. This was the best way to do it because it was New Years Day there was only one direct train from Manchester which was 54 return. But if booked via York as two returns Manchester/York & York/Newcastle the price was only 34. We arrived in Newcastle just before 12. Plenty of time for a few drinks and watch the other games as it was a 5.15 kick off.

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

As it was 5 hours before the game we headed towards Sports Bar not far from the station for a few games of Pool while watching the Liverpool game on SKY. Once we had finished in there we found our way into a bar on the edge of China Town. (Forget what it was called) It was full of Newcastle Fans with around 20 United fans near the doors. All the Newcastle fans we friendly and commenting on our chances on winning the league & generally talking football. Most of them wanted us to win it rather than the title go back down south to Chelsea.

Around 3 O'clock the Newcastle fans started to sing songs in preparation for the match. Which the United fan response singing our own songs. it was a great atmosphere and song good friendly banter. The Newcastle fans would be singing 'Shearer turned you down' to with the united fans responded with the Ole Solskjaer song which refers to Shearer being more expensive than the United legend. Considering there were only around 20 United fans in their we gave a good account for ourselves and chatted to a few Newcastle fans while making the short trip to the ground.

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

As the ground is positioned on a hill you can not miss it. After we left the pub it was a short walk to the ground. as this was around 4.50 their we streams of fans in Newcastle colour heading in one direction.
The ground its self looks huge from outside, it looks bigger that Old Trafford. One we reached the away turnstile we were searched by stewards before attempting the climb up the stairs to the away end. As it was now 5 minutes before kick off we decided to go straight to our seats which were on row 8. Even though you are so far away from the pitch you still get a good view of the whole ground as well as the Newcastle Skyline in the distance.

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

The game it self ended 2-2 with Newcastle going in from a James Milner goal to the delight of the Newcastle Fans. United then went in front from two Paul Scholes goals either side of Half Time. Edgar then got a Newcastle equalizer in the 74th Minute.

The Atmosphere was some what disappointing from the Newcastle fans only when the scored and towards the end was it loud. The united support was excellent and really made some noise. Newcastle fans said themselves that it was the best away support at SJP for some years. United's home support is poor but away many fans will admit we are among the best.

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

Coming out of the ground we were meet by goading Geordies singing ' do you come from Manchester?', err Yes I do actually along with a lot of United away regulars! The walk to the station was straight forward and again the Newcastle fans were friendly talking about the game and wishing us a safe trip home.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Overall Newcastle Away did not disappoint. One of the best away trips in the country without a doubt

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