Tuesday, 31 March 2015

A v Italy (Turin) 31.3.2015

After the relatively straight forward 4-0 win over Lithuania in the Euro 2016 qualifier it was on to Turin for a tough friendly v Italy. As we will be heading to a mates wedding in the Ukraine at the end of the month we opted for the Sport Options day trip from Gatwick. Annoyingly due to restrictive landing slots back after the game the trip was moved to Luton. So on the Monday evening we headed up to a nearby hotel ready for the 6am check in early Tuesday morning.

Rooney tweets a picture of the travelling support - we are slap bang in the middle of it :-)

We left Luton just after 7.30am and the flight was around 1 1/2 hours, add on the time difference and we landed soon after10.30am.  There were stunning views of Alps as we approached Turin.

The Alps
Enter Air - nope me neither!
We flew with an airline called Enter Air, turned out they were a charter company based in Poland - no complaints from me as got us there and back on time and a very friendly crew.

The airport was on the outskirts of the city, surrounded by the stunning snow capped Alps.

So we were soon onto the waiting coaches to take us from Torino airport into the city.  We drove past the ground after about 15 minutes and another 30 minutes later we were dropped on the outskirts of the main squares/streets on the banks of the river Po.

The coaches took us on a picturesque tour into the city and it was great to see a blue sky and we were ready to find some food and drink!  We headed to a very nice square and were soon tucking into some fresh pasta.

Fresh Pasta at lunch, rather large pizzas later in the day, well what else could we eat whilst we were Italy. 

So after the mammoth pizza eating it was time to consider heading to the ground.  Free shuttle buses had been laid on by the Italian authorities.  It was a bit chaotic but we squeezed onto one of the buses and arrived at the ground about 8.15.  It took ages to get in as had to show ID to match names on tickets, then a security search, then the turnstyles, so it was time for the National Anthems pretty shortly after.

Handily the buses dropped us right outside the away end.  The ground looked really really small from the outside!

I remember going into the Stadio D'Alpi back in 1990, at that time we said the ground looked small, but when you enter the stadium is mainly below the entrance level.  The new ground on the same site looks a little similar from the outside but is much smaller and compact (only holds 41k).  The rake of the stands was very VERY steep so that all seats are as close as possible to the pitch.

Some of the 2,099 official travelling fans

So the game finished 1-1, probably a fair result.  Townsend equalised with a superb 25 yard strike.  

We were held in the ground for about 45 minutes, but shortly after we were back on the coaches and then at the airport.  A very quick pass through security and we took off some time after midnight. It was a longer flight home as had headwinds on 220km!  

Overall a very short trip, but great fun.  Roll on Dublin in June.

Mark R

Friday, 2 January 2015

2015 Brighton half and full Marathon for the Martlets Hospice

Hello all

I will be running the Brighton Half (22nd Feb) and Brighton Full (12th April) Marathon for the Martlets Hospice.

Any spare pennies would be greatly appreciated.  To donate please go HERE


Mark R

Thursday, 1 January 2015

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Updated blogs

Welcome to my England and Brighton Blog site

Many thanks to everyone who has visited this site, the counter passed 65,000 on Monday 20th December 2010 and finally passed 100,000 hits in November 2012 (stands at 117k as at 11.8.2014)!!!

The Amex
A list of the all the countries and grounds I have visited following England can be found HERE

My Brazil 2014 World Cup Blog can be found HERE

The trip report and photos of Euro 2012 in Ukraine can be found here

Peterborough v Brighton Saturday 30th October 2010 (left)and Woking v Brighton Tuesday 16th November 2010 (Right)

Picture 1 is Me, Liz and Little Sal in South Africa, Picture 2 is St Mirren v Rangers 2010 CIS Cup Final and picture 3 is Brighton fans many years ago (mid 70's) ready to leave for an away game!

The latest pictures from the building of Brighton and Hove Albions stadium at Falmer can be found HERE and a weekly archive of pictures can be found HERE

Picture from the last game of the first season at Falmer

All the grounds I have visited with Brighton can be found at A-H , I-P and Q-Z

I have added a new section of photographs from England away games before I started going. These can be found here. If you have any you wish to add to this page please e-mail me at mrblobby71@hotmail.com

Happy viewing. Dont forget that many pictures can be seen full size by clicking on them!

Please feel free to leave any feedback/messages to mrblobby71@hotmail.com

Mark R