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benchwarmer

Friday Fun: When you get to the ground and the game is off . . .

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Posted (edited)

Norwich fans are great travellers, and many of us have turned up at a far-flung destination to find that the weather has taken its toll.  Let's have your memories. I'll start . . .

A Tuesday night in early September, Blackpool away in the League Cup.  It was when Bryan Hamilton was manager.  We arrived early and went down to the front.  Blue skies overhead.  Far out over the Irish Sea we could see a spectacular thunderstorm, but we weren't worried.  Then we began to realise it was heading in our direction, and at 7 o'clock the heavens opened.  It was biblical.  Within minutes the road down to the ground was almost impassable. 

They eventually let us in, and the pitch was under water with ground staff prodding ineffectually with forks.  A delayed kickoff was announced and the players came out to try and warm up.  It was hilarious, more like water polo than football.  Clearly no chance of the game going ahead.  And to cap it all, I believe the referee was a Mr P Downs!

Nothing for it but to head back along the M6, M42, A14 and A11, after a tour along the seafront to see the illuminations.  Journey uneventful until, in the early hours somewhere near Cambridge, we came to a sudden stop.  Police everywhere.  Must be a major incident, we thought.  But it was just a herd of cows on the road, and the local plod were trying to chase them away with little success.  Highly entertaining, even in our exhausted state, and just SO Norwich.

Did we do it all over again for the rearranged match?  I think you know the answer.

 

Edited by benchwarmer
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Went to Highbury a few years ago, bright sunshine all the way. When we arrived the early morning fog got stuck in the ground, didn’t realise how sunken the pitch was. Match was called off at 2:45

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I have relayed this tale before but back in the early 80s got on a coach for our game at Man Utd. Snow on the Pennines meant that we didn't roll into Manchester until 4.45 just as the players were marching off for their showers. So, the game wasn't called off (we lost 1-0) but we didn't get to see the game.

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I also went to that Blackpool game which was called off. Stayed the night as we had booked a B&B and sheer dedication took us back the next week for the rearranged game but drove home to Norwich after.

Walsall back in League One was another called off less than 2 hours before kick off as we were all drinking in a social club at the ground. Went back for that one as well with Cody coming off the bench to score the winner in a game that finished 2-1 having been behind. Those were the days when subs were used to change the game. 😂

Back in the early 80's got as far as Thetford on a Boxing day morning when Jack Frost put paid to a game at Charlton.

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Didn't go the the Blackpool game. Was at Walsall when that was called off. They had little burners on the pitch trying to thaw it out. Went back again when we won 2-1. A certain Troy Deeney scored to out them in front.

I remember being on Mascot coach for the league cup semi at Chelsea but was called off early and we'd hardly got out of Norwich. 

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Like Nigel went to Walsall. On boxing Day? Hours on a coach. Called off when we were in the ground. Was a long journey back. Went to the midweek replay. Turned up late (A14 roadworks. There's a surprise) They won it. Think after going behind. I remember the first half being a bit ****. That's all I remember tho to be honest. Got into work for 6 with little sleep and was pretty useless but I'd gone with my boss so he covered for us!

 

Was half way to Sunderland when that got called off. Snow? Went to Newcastle anyway and got pissed as was the plan. Watched the rearranged game in the lounge at Carrow road. Won the league. A draw meant Sunderland got in the playoffs. They didn't go up tho.

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All of the above!

Also QPR away in 74. Frozen pitch. Got as far as Shepherds Bush. Turned around and stopped off in a pub in Edgware and Tommy Cooper was in there p*55ed out of his mind. He was quite rude to us. True story.

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Went to see City play Everton in the FA Cup st Goodison. Match called of but in time for the coach to divert to Maine Road to watch Manchester City beat Derby County in what we were  told was the only match played in the North West that day. My overriding memory of the day was waliking past a dead dog in a plastic bag on the side of the road as we walked to the ground.

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On the bridge over the motorway just outside Burnley waiting for the police escort.....twice. First time two of the coaches decided to go & watch Wigan v Bury, they gave us our own stand.

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30 minutes ago, Crafty Canary said:

Went to see City play Everton in the FA Cup st Goodison. Match called of but in time for the coach to divert to Maine Road to watch Manchester City beat Derby County in what we were  told was the only match played in the North West that day. My overriding memory of the day was waliking past a dead dog in a plastic bag on the side of the road as we walked to the ground.

******* hell, that sounds like a Samuel Beckett play. ☹️

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53 minutes ago, Kathy said:

All of the above!

Also QPR away in 74. Frozen pitch. Got as far as Shepherds Bush. Turned around and stopped off in a pub in Edgware and Tommy Cooper was in there p*55ed out of his mind. He was quite rude to us. True story.

Did you plan to go to that pub or did it happen ' just like that ' ?

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How about flying to Madrid for a friendly only to realise when you land that the game is taking place 350 miles away and you can't get there in time! Not me but a couple of Leeds fans from Ipswich who ended up watching the game in a bar near the Bernabeu, we lost 3-0 and there were only 25 of us in a crowd of 18000.

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I’ve had a couple of them, both when going to watch my most local side Kingstonian - one early-season they were playing Leiston but there were massive delays on the M25 and the game was put back a couple of times before Leiston had to give up...we all went into the clubhouse and got to eat the sarnies that had been for the players/officials🙂; a couple of years later on an August bank holiday (note:August) it had rained a fair bit and then threw it down from 2:30 and had to be postponed for a waterlogged pitch....no free sarnies this time though.

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Coventry back in the 80´s. I went on the train with a mate. We got as far as Nuneaton, where we were supposed to catch a local bus for the final part of the journey, but found out a localised downpour had caused the game to be called off.

We went to Leicester / Crystal Palace instead, ended 4-4. We went in with the Palace fans, at the end of the game the Police didn´t want to let us on the Norwich train at first, they  tried to make us go to London

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I was also in Blackpool, still in a bar when the word came through. Coach home, as mentioned delayed by cows on the A14. Did Walsall as well happily slurping a couple of pre match beers when it was called off. Wasn't at the rearranged game due to being in South Wales with the RAF though. 

The other side of it, I remember being at Everton in the 90s when the away end started filling up with Sunderland fans. They were meant to be at Tranmere I think, called off for whatever reason so they decided to come and support us. The stewards didn't know what to do. It worked too, City won 1-0. 

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, nutty nigel said:

Didn't go the the Blackpool game. Was at Walsall when that was called off. They had little burners on the pitch trying to thaw it out. Went back again when we won 2-1. A certain Troy Deeney scored to out them in front.

I remember being on Mascot coach for the league cup semi at Chelsea but was called off early and we'd hardly got out of Norwich. 

I would have been at that rescheduled match at Walsall. I was working away at the time near Nuneaton, so headed off after work up the M6 to the Bescot.

Rolling up to the parking area, this very srtong-Brummie accented woman asked "Home or away supporter ?"
I replied "Away".
She said "OK, follow that road round and park up against the wall"
"OK" I replied.
"You _did_ understand me, did yeow ?" she said, noting the massive difference in accents.

On paying the £3 for parking (home supporters only paid £2 !!) I realised that that 'wall' I parked up against was the back of one of the stands !

Got into the ground with the other Norwich fans... it was sooo cold. Still had snow round the pitch perimeter. We went 1-0 down fairly early on and at half time I was so cold I was thinking about heading off already.  However, I stuck it out and saw Norwich get 2 goals in the last 10 minutes or so.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/eng_div_2/8478527.stm

Edited by K Lo
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18 minutes ago, K Lo said:

I would have been at that rescheduled match at Walsall. I was working away at the time near Nuneaton, so headed off after work up the M6 to the Bescot.

Rolling up to the parking area, this very srtong-Brummie accented woman asked "Home or away supporter ?"
I replied "Away".
She said "OK, follow that road round and park up against the wall"
"OK" I replied.
"You _did_ understand me, did yeow ?" she said, noting the massive difference in accents.

On paying the £3 for parking (home supporters only paid £2 !!) I realised that that 'wall' I parked up against was the back of one of the stands !

Got into the ground with the other Norwich fans... it was sooo cold. Still had snow round the pitch perimeter. We went 1-0 fairly early on and at half time I was so cold I was thinking about heading off already.  However, I stuck it out and saw Norwich get 2 goals in teh last 10 minutes or so.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/eng_div_2/8478527.stm

It was bloomin' cold for sure. There were also patches on the pitch where they'd had those burner things going! It was probably touch and go for playing that game too.

Who went to Colchester that season where the pitch was well waterlogged? I think that must have been close to being called off. Probably didn't dare though with half Norwich there and all that Lambert stuff simmering.

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1 hour ago, DraytonBoy said:

How about flying to Madrid for a friendly only to realise when you land that the game is taking place 350 miles away and you can't get there in time! Not me but a couple of Leeds fans from Ipswich who ended up watching the game in a bar near the Bernabeu, we lost 3-0 and there were only 25 of us in a crowd of 18000.

Leeds fans from Ipswich.

I keep reading it bit it isn't looking any better.

Leeds fans from ipswich.

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1 hour ago, DraytonBoy said:

How about flying to Madrid for a friendly only to realise when you land that the game is taking place 350 miles away and you can't get there in time! Not me but a couple of Leeds fans from Ipswich who ended up watching the game in a bar near the Bernabeu, we lost 3-0 and there were only 25 of us in a crowd of 18000.

That is pretty tragic but to be fair they did come from Ipswich 😀

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QPR mid 90's around Shepherds Bush when we learned the game was off. Went into the nearest pub which was showing the Irish Rugby game, They must have thought that of yellow and green were Irish, or they didn't care.

Half time meant  a big bowl of stew and bread, Can't remember the result, or really getting down to the Banana in Balham - two gigs, as two separate rooms. Just scrapped by .... I think.

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24 minutes ago, nutty nigel said:

It was bloomin' cold for sure. There were also patches on the pitch where they'd had those burner things going! It was probably touch and go for playing that game too.

Who went to Colchester that season where the pitch was well waterlogged? I think that must have been close to being called off. Probably didn't dare though with half Norwich there and all that Lambert stuff simmering.

Yeah it was a quagmire and the ball only just passed the roll test, my eldest was our mascot that day and got thoroughly soaked in the warm up 😂

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17 minutes ago, Rivvo said:

Yeah it was a quagmire and the ball only just passed the roll test, my eldest was our mascot that day and got thoroughly soaked in the warm up 😂

That will be a great memory though👍

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The best memory was silencing their extremely big for their boots fans 😃

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5 minutes ago, Rivvo said:

The best memory was silencing their extremely big for their boots fans 😃

That bloke who jumped on to the perimeter and came running towards the Norwich fans! What was he going to do?? 😂

They rugby tackled him in the end. He was still on the floor bright red shouting something while the whole stand laughed and cheered at him. Football with a smile is always best💛⚽💚🙃

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I remember back at the start of the 80's we had a match away to Manchester United I decided to go, even though I was serving in the Royal Navy in Plymouth, it was a Saturday so no work. I caught the train from Plymouth 5am in the morning and got to Manchester 1pm (trains were not very fast in those days) Got to Old Trafford in time and watched as we lost 0-2 I then left the ground to meet an old school friend who I share a few pints with, so much so, that I lost all track of time and suddenly  found  I'd missed the last train back to Plymouth ! I said to my school I'd have to stay here the rest of the night but they insisted I could travel back with them to the Fine City which I did. I ended up in Norwich in the early morning before any trains, but there was a bus to London so I caught that. followed by a bus to Bristol and train back to Plymouth getting back at about 3pm ! My girlfriend at the time was wondering where I had been.   

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16 hours ago, Crabbycanary3 said:

I have relayed this tale before but back in the early 80s got on a coach for our game at Man Utd. Snow on the Pennines meant that we didn't roll into Manchester until 4.45 just as the players were marching off for their showers. So, the game wasn't called off (we lost 1-0) but we didn't get to see the game.

I was at that game. Weather here was OK and I set off dressed accordingly. Got there in plenty of time but nearly froze to death. You didn't miss much. 

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I once went from Norwich to Southend to play in a works match. Both teams ready to kick off on time when we realised no one had taken a ball. Quick whip round and a trip to the town centre required 😂

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