Being an oversea fan is always frustrated. Of course you cannot go to a lot of games, as it costs hundreds of pounds each time. You are also missing out on all the life around the club, by watching some away games in clubs or spending time around the training ground.
As an away fan more often than not I never meet the players and this season it was really boring to me to be on holiday in Italy, while we played in Germany even if I was not far from going to Brunswick.
However last week-end created another factor of disappointment. The fewer number of games per season you attend, the bigger the risk of not seeing your team winning you take. Even for my son and myself each game at the Boleyn is an event that builds up our love for the club, the game against Stoke was not the right one to select a flight to London.
A couple of things were disturbing. The first one was that we tried to buy and print the new kit in the fan store. My son bought the home kit. For me it was an away one. I never print my jerseys because I consider it a bit more of a club thing than the players. It is their job, the club’s history. Even if some players are fully respecting the club, I’d rather leave my back blank of printings.
My son is of course a bit different, but for official kits he prefers printing his nickname (Matt) and select the number of his favourite player. His Championship jersey was with the 7 of Sam Baldock but last season Jarvis signed and took that number, which was perfect. This time as he likes Kevin Nolan’s celebration, he wanted Matt and the 4.
Sorry but there are not enough employees for the printing service and are also not fast enough. After 1 hour of 2 queues (first to pay for the printing, second to collect the Jersey) we were obliged to leave the queue in order not to miss the kick-off, gutted to attend the game with our Championship equipment (at least we were wearing them).
Then the game started and we had not been lucky enough to have time to take pictures with our flag and talk with the neighbours as we like to. Surprisingly, the crowd was really silent compared to the previous games we were in. It looked like after a couple of seconds, the scenario was obvious to everybody. We lost the ball immediately and that’s what we did 90 minutes. Our midfield was poor, our right defense badly positioned, Maiga again alone and not convincing enough.
You know the score, this is not a game report but for the first time at the Boleyn my 10 year old kid said, “this game is boring”.
We had the occasion to sing the Bubbles maybe 2 or 3 times when the ball was in play, which is not a lot, so frustration was complete despite the sunny weather.
Luckily the kid’s jersey was ready at the end, Matt was able to wear it for the duration of the week-end, even in the overground on Sunday when it was full of Arsenal fans.
There will be better days. We have to remember that luckily we were at Upton Park for the Brighton 6-0 and I was at Wembley.
We’ll see other defeats but also victories we will all be proud of.
Come on You Irons, the best yet to come.