Monday, 24 December 2007

Awaydays #12 - Crystal Palace

Selhurst ParkThe club: Crystal Palace (The Eagles), Selhurst Park

The ground: Odd. One huge new stand behind one goal, two older stands down the flanks and a Sainsbury's at the other end with executive boxes on top and houses round the back. The newest stand looks completely out of place and dwarfs everything else. The outside looks pre-Taylor report modernisation with odd random bits here and there. The Arthur Wait stand (away end) is divided into 3 sections vertically with the new "posh" plastic seats down the front, and two sections of wooden seats behind. The roof leaks even though it isn't raining. And what is a Non-segregated area? 6

The facilities and food: You descend from the turnstiles down to the covered concourse after passing the outside ladies toilets down more steps to the left, and descend down again into the gents toilets which though were quite large were run down - someone even got stuck in a cubical. So there are lots of steps. Depending on the expected crowd there may be one or two bars open but they are quite big though sell extortionately prices pies - which are quite tasty. 5/10

The stewarding/police: The stewards were content to let large setions stand throughout the game, as long as before kick off you were seated in your allocated seat - but you could happily swap after kick off. 5/10

The travelling: Round about and round about again. Apart from directly near the ground there is no signage, which in London causes problems. The Sainsbury's car park helpfully doubles up as a football car park because the store closes (yes, closes!!) for the duration of the game. There are 3 national rail stations withing 5-10 minutes walk of the ground. 5/10

The surrounding area (what's there to do outside the ground): Back in Thornton Heath there are several pubs which welcome away fans, including 'the pub with no name' on the corner of the mini roundabout with its accommodating Irish bar staff. 7/10

The home fans (their contribution to the atmosphere etc): Excellent, on a par, neigh better than Blackpool, they were vocal throughout the whole match and very friendly in the pub before hand. 10/10

Total score: 38/60

Awaydays League Table:

Barnsley (Oakwell Stadium) - 42

Blackpool (Bloomfield Road) - 38
Charlton Athletic (The Valley) - 38
Crystal Palace (Selhurts Park) - 38
Hull City (KC Stadium) - 38
Sheffield United (Bramall Lane) - 38
QPR (Loftus Road) - 36

West Ham (Boleyn Ground) - 31
Layer Road (Colchester) - 32
Stoke City (Britannia Stadium) - 28
Torquay United (Plainmoor) - 27
Watford (Vicarage Road) - 27

It's getting congested round the 38 mark isn't it - a much closer league than last season

Note that I was unable to go to Carrow Road.

No comments: