Well it was about time that I went to one, after all, I’ve been here nearly 3 years. So on Saturday evening I did, I went to one, with my friends Mark and Andy.
The venue was the Suncorp Stadium, Milton. The tickets cost $20 and included the train fare. The match was Brisbane Roar FC versus Melbourne Victory. Yes, I was going to see my first ever live Hyundai A-League “soccer” match! Although, of course, I can’t bring myself to call it soccer, so let’s just say I watched an Australian football match.
Now I’m not the best person in the world to compare this experience with that of going to an English football match. There’s a good reason for that, the last time I went to a professional football ground to watch football, Ray Clemence was in goal for Tottenham.
I reckon that was about 1985, possibly 86. So I am sure that football grounds in England have changed a fair bit in the last 25 years. I’ve even heard they’ve got seats these days.
They did at the Suncorp too…..
As kick-off approached we decided to make our way to our seats. I was impressed with how clean the whole area was……
Football songs around the world don’t seem to change that much. We were treated to such classics as….
“Oh when the Roar, oh when the Roar, oh when the Roar go marching in, I wanna be….”
“It’s all gone quiet over there, yes it’s all gone quiet over there…”
Thing is, it would. This was the Melbourne visiting supporter’s area…..
Not many of them, are there? I’d say 200 tops. But in fairness to them, they would have had a long way to come to watch this game, 1683 km to be precise. That’s the same as the distance between London and Malaga in the south of Spain.
But not all the Melbourne fans were in their designated area. Let’s return back to “The Den”, where we were sitting. Back in England, Millwall Football Club also have an area behind the goal called “The Den”.
But this “Den” was not the same as Millwall’s “Den”, I noticed a subtle difference. Because one of the Melbourne fans not in his designated area was sitting in “The Den”.
And he got outed. I don’t know how it happened, but I heard a bit of a commotion and turned round to see a guy pointing at this Melbourne fan and all the supporters in The Den were jeering, pointing and shouting at him. I think I may have even heard some rude language!
In response to this aggression, the Melbourne fan stood up and turned around to face the Brisbane crowd, this lot…..
The jeering continued for a while, but was also accompanied by laughter. Laughter! If this had have been the Millwall Den, I really don’t think we would have been hearing laughter at this stage.
Back to the singing. They had some good variations to some traditional songs too. Like….
“If you don’t own a coat clap your hands, if you don’t own a coat clap your hands…..”
“We all live where you go for your holidays, for your holidays, for your holidays….”
The first song, of course, is a reference to the fact that Brisbane is pretty much warm all year round and Melbourne can be absolutely freezing in the winter. The second is because Queensland is a popular holiday destination for those who live down south.
Anyway, the game finished at around 9:45 PM, just in time for us to take the 2 minute walk to Caxton Street, get ourselves into a bar and watch more……..
I have to say, going to see a “soccer” match in Australia is hugely enjoyable and I loved it. I’ll be going again. Oh, the score?
Brisbane Roar 2, Melbourne Victory 1.