Stadium - Southampton FC
Saturday 10th September 2005
V QPR, Championship League, 3pm
1. Why you were looking
forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be)
I have always liked the look of St
lot of people criticise it as it is similar to others like
and the Madejski stadium,
I still rate it very highly. Also
QPR are my team and I
don't get to go to many away matches,
sp with this being at the beginning of the season, it was one trip that I
didn't want to miss. Tickets were also easy
to get hold of as we were allocated extra tickets.
2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
I was planning to meet and old friend for a few
beers before the game who was travelling down from Bath
so taking that into account, I
thought getting the train would be a good idea...how wrong could
I be! I set off at 12.15
for a one hour journey from Farnborough
and just 10 minutes into the journey the train
terminated at Basingstoke due to problems further
along the line. From
there they allocated us another train which was supposed to be direct to
Southampton which it was,
but they didn't tell us that it was going to be a slow
train stopping at every station on route. I eventually
arrived in Southampton at 2.45,
where I met my mate who was waiting at the station.
We followed the crowds to the stadium, which was a
pleasant walk through the city centre.
3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?
On approach to the stadium the fans seemed friendly enough and the stadium
viewed from a far was definitely very impressive.
Due to the time, I didn't have chance to walk around the stadium so
it was just a case of polishing off the can of
beer brought on the train and getting into the
4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then
other sides of the ground?
The ground as I expected
was large and impressive, with two big screens
behind either goals at the top of the stands which were helpful.
The stadium is all single
tiered and runs all the same size around the pitch which to me looked
impressive but I can see how people could say it
lacks character. One good thing about the stadium
though is that every seat in the stadium has a fantastic view,
as there are no supporting pillars anywhere and it
had ample legroom. The
QPR fans were allocated in the normal away end of the
stadium which is one half of the stand behind the
goal. On one half are the noisy home fans on the
other the away fans the only thing separating the two is some netting on the
seats and lots of stewards and police.
5. Comment on
the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, toilets etc..
The game itself wasn't the best I've seen.
I was expecting a good game considering the good start
both sides had made to the season. Southampton started the stronger and looked
very threatening. QPR's
first attacking move resulted in a corner in which we took a rather undeserved
lead through Dan Shittu. This
brought the game to life and the noise coming from the QPR
fans was fantastic that was until a Southampton free kick found its way under
our keeper 5 minutes later to make it 1-1. Atmosphere
was great from both sets of supporters and there was
some friendly banter going on between both sets of fans throughout the whole
game. The stewards though were a
pain telling everyone to stay seated. Toilets
clean and pies were as expected to expensive and not hot enough but I've had
worse. Overall a good game and a fantastic atmosphere.
6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game
Getting away from the ground was easy enough the away fans were allocated a
different route away from the ground than the home but didn't make much
difference as we were only to meet 2 minutes round the corner but no problems in
that respect. A huge police presence all over the city
made it safe, also a lot of the roads
I noticed were closed for all the fans to get away so
I would imagine it would be difficult getting away
from the city if you were driving.
7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
A very good day out started badly with train delays but the ground was good,
atmosphere even better and a good point to take back to Loftus
Road. I would definitely
visit St Mary's
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