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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Away Days

I have decided it is time to reintroduce an old thread, Away Days.  It was always quite popular, and with next year providing several opportunities for new venues, I felt it prudent to catch up on the back log of stadiums and arenas that have all ready been visited.  It also gives me something to post every week, as to be honest, the Squad has fragmented, and we don't really do a great deal at the moment.

So this week we are winging our way to my state of births capital, Columbus Ohio.  What makes the trip different to my other American reports, is that it features the most European of sports, football.  Or as the locals call it soccer.  Whether it is due to it's strong German ethnicity, Columbus has always been something of a football hot bed (if there can actually be such a thing in the US).  The Crew name was voted for by fans, and the gold and black kit is more than a little bit garish, but it is the club badge that is a bit odd.  As you can see it is a little bit on the camp side. Sure the Buckeyes are the big local draw (College grid iron for those who don't know) but the Crew continue to prosper.  One of the original 10 teams of Major League Soccer, they were champions in 2008. 

So what about the stadium.  Well first up the minus point.  It is quite a ways out of town, and as with all cities outside of New York and Chicago, public transport is non existent, which means car or taxi.  This also means you are a captive audience, so what they charge for beer puts even  European prices to shame.  And they ID everybody it seems, so make sure you have drivers license with you., or even better, get half cut before arrival.  Lastly on the downside, the playing standard. Passes are misplaced, runs ignored and open goals spurned.  There is some talent out there, but I would liken it a top Divison 2 team, or perhaps a mid league Division 1 side.  Being a Bradford City fan, it was an actual improvement of what I have become accustomed too over the last few seasons.

But the pros easily outweigh the cons.  For a start they play through the summer, so the weather is almost always perfect.  Evening games are pleasant, just about perfect.  Apart from the beer, the concessions are brilliant.  The night I was there, it was dollar dog night, so a fat juicy eight incher could be had for the princely sum of 60p. Jamon would be in heaven.  The ground itself is not bad either.  Just a smidgen over 20,000, with not a bad seat.  The price was pretty good as well.  If memory serves it was around $25 for the cheapest seats, although I got mine off a guy who had some spare season tickets for $15.  Bargain.  But this being America, the best thing were the cheer leaders.  I spied several future Mrs Euro's, and when the Crew score, they do some serious shaking.  Nice. Gotta love them corn fed Mid-West girls....

  • Capacity-20,455
  • Concessions- The beer is pricey,but the grub is top notch.  Brats, Hot Dogs, Burgers, Pizza...the list is almost endless.  Service is quick and efficient, and for what you get, good value.
  • Built-1999
  • Did You Know?- It was the first soccer specific stadium built in the United States.
  • Visited By- Euro Bri, American Frank and my mum
  • Rating- Field of Dreams- This ground pretty much eptiomises average.  Pretty much like the city itself. The kind of place that is nice enough, but you wouldn't really put on your bucket list.


camisetas de futbol said...

Euro's World

camisetas de futbol tailandia said...

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