FanDuel - WFBC

May 21, 2013

Attending Your First Premier League Game: "It will be noisier than you are used to. Emotions will be higher than they are at home. The food will be awful. People will be drunk. The weather will be bad. Many of the supporters, even the ones cheering the loudest, will not appear to be having fun as we know it, and will be expressing their feelings in novel combinations of swear words."

posted by rcade to soccer at 10:58 AM - 12 comments

"French fries with curry sauce"

I have found two places over here that do a good job of this. One is in Hartford, the other is in Toronto. I haven't quite reached the point where I'll fly to Toronto just to get them, but it's close.

As for the games, I suspect if you've been to a USA-Mexico game, then you've not much to fear about Arsenal-West Ham.

It is worth going to an English game if you have the chance though - even if you're just on an appropriately timed layover at Heathrow - the noise and the constant singing is such a contrast to the moribund crowds I've been in in the US.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 11:55 AM on May 21

If you're ever near Portsmouth (NH), I highly recommend the curry fries (and pretty much everything else) at Street 360° The Coat of Arms does a decent job as well and is the de facto gathering place for football fans in the area.

posted by yerfatma at 12:12 PM on May 21

The Slainte Irish pub in Baltimore's Fells Point neighborhood has epic curry fries.

One of these days I'm doing some Premiership tourism. I need to express my crushing disappointment at Spurs in person.

posted by rcade at 02:24 PM on May 21

I need to express my crushing disappointment at Spurs in person

Yep. I decided a few seasons ago, simply because I thought I'd enjoy Premier League that much more with a rooting interest, to break from the Man U/Arsenal pack and jump on the Tottenham wagon. Cheers to my first high hope / bitter let down season.

posted by tahoemoj at 04:42 PM on May 21

I adopted Spurs because of Edgar Davids. When I didn't know enough about soccer to understand what I was seeing during the games, Davids was always a whirling dervish in a stylish white-and-black uniform.

posted by rcade at 04:57 PM on May 21

If NBC keeps gobbling up English football rights, beIn Sport might be forced to air Barnet games by 2015.

posted by yerfatma at 06:47 PM on May 21

More like Fox Sports 1, if they're not doing high school soccer ... not sure how long the contract is, but beIn has the Championship, so they're good.

One of my aspirations is to travel to England and take a tour of some of the smaller stadiums, like the non-league ones ... now I'm being tempted to take a detour.

BTW, Barnet's in for a shock ... Premier Sports works on a cheap match-fee basis (GBP 5K home team, GBP 1K away team) with the Conference.

posted by jjzucal at 11:26 PM on May 21

I need to express my crushing disappointment at Spurs in person.

Try being a Derby County fan from birth. My family emigrated half way around the world.

These things may be connected.

posted by owlhouse at 06:56 AM on May 22

Cheers to my first high hope / bitter let down season

Ahhhh! 2008-2009 ... Liverpool lose only 2 games and still fall behind ManU by 4 points due to an abundance of ties. The memories.

posted by Ricardo at 08:35 AM on May 22

Cheers to my first high hope / bitter let down season.

Are you forgetting last season, when Spurs actually qualified for Champions League but were edged out by fifth place Chelsea since as defending champs they had the right of return? Or does that not meet the high hope/bitter letdown criteria?

posted by billsaysthis at 11:38 AM on May 22

Or does that not meet the high hope/bitter letdown criteria?

That doesn't meet my nascient fanhood / confessed historical ignorance standard.

posted by tahoemoj at 02:24 PM on May 22

There's one element that was glaringly missing in this piece: the role of the fan. In English football it is the responsibility of the fan (actually "supporter") to support the team. You have a role to play. The players respond to your cheering and singing.

In America, it is the team's responsibility to entertain the fans. The fans cheer when the team does something good, and boo when they do something bad.

In English football booing is considered nearly a heinous act -- reserved for only the most abject of displays. Many supporters will say that one should never boo; that it destroys a player's confidence and undermines the team.

Sadly, I think this notion of supporters is gradually disappearing from the English game. Fans aren't as vocal as they used to be (piped in music before the match and at halftime is a great example -- the club tries to create a fake atmosphere instead of letting the supporters naturally create it themselves). The loss of terracing, while adding to safety measures, has also negatively impacted the atmosphere in the ground.

posted by geneparmesan at 11:00 PM on May 27

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