Celtic v Heart Of Midlothian
Sunday October 7th, 2012
Scottish Premier League, 3pm
1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):
Although the majority of Hearts fans don't like coming here, I've always liked Celtic Park. It's of course the biggest stadium in the country, and it's also a class above the rest. I'd been here on two previous occasions prior to this match, and although I didn't have good footballing experiences, I thoroughly enjoyed being at the ground. With a number of Celtic fans in my family, I've always wanted to go along with one of them to watch a European tie at Parkhead (still wouldn't cheer Celtic on though!).
2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
On this occasion, I traveled with the clubs official supporter bus which leaves directly from Tynecastle. On my first visit I traveled with a Celtic supporters bus which parked fairly close to the ground. The 2nd time, I made my own way through on public transport. I've found on all occasions that the ground is simple to find. On the Hearts supporters bus though, we had to park about a 15 minute walk from the ground. I don't think this is the usual procedure but it's one long road all the way to the stadium so still easy to get to.
3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?
Hearts fans aren't very welcome in that neck of the woods, so unfortunately there isn't an awful lot on offer in terms of pre match entertainment. If you are making your own way through, then of course you can go to the city centre which is friendly enough, but I'm not sure on matchday restrictions. Some Hearts fans even go to Rangers supporters clubs if they manage to find one that'll accept them. All the pubs around Celtic Park are Celtic themed and full of home supporters so it's not really ideal for many away supporters, but some might be more welcome than others.
4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?
On my first visit to Celtic Park, I was fascinated once I got inside. I was only 13 at the time so was easily excited. Unfortunately, I sat in the Celtic end on my first trip and I was sat high up with an excellent view. Away fans are situated in a corner of the ground, much like Ibrox. On my most recent trip, it was a rather timid affair, but when Celtic Park is full and the atmosphere is good, it can be slightly intimidating. Especially given the hostile reception that Hearts fans are given.
5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
My previous 2 visits saw Celtic win both 5-0 and 4-0, so I was just hoping to see a slightly more competitive game this time around. The game was a rather poor affair which reflected on the atmosphere. There wasn't a huge crowd either, due to the early Sunday kick-off meaning that it wasn't a classic visit to Parkhead. Celtic won by a single goal, practically gifted by Hearts substitute goalkeeper. Other than that, it was a fairly scrappy game which neither side really deserved to win. Due to what's already been said, there wasn't much action between the supporters meaning the stewards and police were hardly active all day. What I will say though, is that on previous occasions Police and even stewards have been known for their rather heavy handed approach. So much so, that Hearts have even sent their own stewards to assist in the away end on our last few visits.
6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
Again, it was that long walk down the road to catch the supporters bus. It wasn't the worst of results so it was a bit of an easier journey home to face. Hardly any traffic at all surprisingly, and with the game finishing shortly before 3, we were back at Tynecastle by half 4.
7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
Not the best of visits but it hasn't put me off. The match was poor but the result was certainly an improvement of my previous visits. Was a fairly mediocre day all round, but it certainly could have been a whole lot worse.
Return To The Celtic
Return To The Main Menu