Best n/g footballing experiences | Vital Football

Best n/g footballing experiences

LockdownLife

Vital Youth Team
#1
Intrigued to see what crazy/funny/historic non-Gills experiences you've all had over the years.

Mine definitely has to be the El Clasico Paisa 2016, which is the Medellin Derby between Independiente Medellin and Athletico Nacional. Nacional are the must successful and most supported team in the country, think Man U, Medellin are the crap one like Man City before the money. I think you can guess which one I was supporting,

I managed to get hold of someone who had some tickets for sale but on the day he was already in the stadium complex that needed a ticket to get into when we got there. I thought our chances of going were scuppered but managed to use my limited Spanish to blag my way in to go meet him. The problem was I had to use my limited Spanish again to get back out, and then turn around give the other tickets to my friends and go back in. Definitely a lot of confusion among the security but making few jokes about me being a stupid gringo goes a long way!

We got inside the stadium (approx 45k) about 30 mins before kick off and were in the top tier in the home ultras end (much to the shock of my local friends). Only the posh seats on the sides had seating. The atmosphere was already pretty mental and not long after the riot police had to enter the stands to break up fights where fans had broken through the segregation. The fixture is incredibly highly charged to say the least. I think the preceding year or two was fan-free due to too much violence and some deaths. Only one set of fans is allowed to go to the stadium via public transport. There really is not much watching of the football going on it's just about making noise and coordinating all the endless tifos.

Medellin took the lead early in the first half which created a pretty intense celebration and a sketchy terracing surge. Being too young for the old Rainham End it's good to be part of. Very glad I wasn't at the front of the top tier though! Unfortunately the scum equalised and it finished 1-1.

At half time they pretty much empty the terracing to start preparing for the start of the second half. This includes getting new tifos ready and leaving various things to throw when you're allowed back in. Turns out the start of second half is when they put on their 'show'. Which is just incredible to witness and be part of. See the link below for a video I took.

https://streamable.com/2e60cq

I had a friend in the posh seats and he took this. We were below the sign near where the flag was being waved.

El Clasico 1.jpeg

He also took this just after the video was taken. The tifos they were bringing in covered our view for a solid 5+ mins.
El Clasico 2.jpeg

Prematch stadium shot:
IMG_20160320_150031a.jpg

After the game a huge fight kicked off outside. Thankfully we hadn't left the ground and watched unfold looking over the back of the stand. It didn't last too long as the riot police tear gased etc. and to be fair to the locals still in the stand they were very quick to reassure us everything as alright! I went to another 3/4 games since that one and the atmosphere is always good but never as mental as that day.

Experiences that are also up their for me:
  • Galatasaray vs Fenebahce 2017. Was in Turkey for work and managed to delay my flight back so I could go to the game. It's a shame it wasn't the old 'hell' stadium as it's impossible to get a lot of the crazy stuff into the stadium now. It did just mean that the fans were setting off flares on the underground on the way to the stadium... Because of the roof it was by far the noisiest game I've ever been too. The whistling whenever Fener had the ball was deafening.
  • Man United v Portsmouth 2008. A cracking away day (as a teen) in the FA Cup, the Pompey fans are very good. 'We' won with a late penalty that saw Rio Ferdinand go in goal. My Uncle was a ST holder so I also got to go to the semis at Wembley.
  • Hanoi v ???? 2015. I was in Hanoi and thought I would go to a local game and it was quite frankly hilarious. The quality is terrible, unsurprisingly, but they're allowed 3/4 foreign players in each team and the general consensus is to get massive/rapid African players in those slots. They absolutely tear through the considerably smaller and slower local players. I believe the game finished 4-4.
Anyways, I was wondering if any of you had any non-Gills experiences to share?
 

PhilK66

Vital 1st Team Regular
#2
Intrigued to see what crazy/funny/historic non-Gills experiences you've all had over the years.

Mine definitely has to be the El Clasico Paisa 2016, which is the Medellin Derby between Independiente Medellin and Athletico Nacional. Nacional are the must successful and most supported team in the country, think Man U, Medellin are the crap one like Man City before the money. I think you can guess which one I was supporting,

I managed to get hold of someone who had some tickets for sale but on the day he was already in the stadium complex that needed a ticket to get into when we got there. I thought our chances of going were scuppered but managed to use my limited Spanish to blag my way in to go meet him. The problem was I had to use my limited Spanish again to get back out, and then turn around give the other tickets to my friends and go back in. Definitely a lot of confusion among the security but making few jokes about me being a stupid gringo goes a long way!

We got inside the stadium (approx 45k) about 30 mins before kick off and were in the top tier in the home ultras end (much to the shock of my local friends). Only the posh seats on the sides had seating. The atmosphere was already pretty mental and not long after the riot police had to enter the stands to break up fights where fans had broken through the segregation. The fixture is incredibly highly charged to say the least. I think the preceding year or two was fan-free due to too much violence and some deaths. Only one set of fans is allowed to go to the stadium via public transport. There really is not much watching of the football going on it's just about making noise and coordinating all the endless tifos.

Medellin took the lead early in the first half which created a pretty intense celebration and a sketchy terracing surge. Being too young for the old Rainham End it's good to be part of. Very glad I wasn't at the front of the top tier though! Unfortunately the scum equalised and it finished 1-1.

At half time they pretty much empty the terracing to start preparing for the start of the second half. This includes getting new tifos ready and leaving various things to throw when you're allowed back in. Turns out the start of second half is when they put on their 'show'. Which is just incredible to witness and be part of. See the link below for a video I took.

https://streamable.com/2e60cq

I had a friend in the posh seats and he took this. We were below the sign near where the flag was being waved.

View attachment 40488

He also took this just after the video was taken. The tifos they were bringing in covered our view for a solid 5+ mins.
View attachment 40489

Prematch stadium shot:
View attachment 40490

After the game a huge fight kicked off outside. Thankfully we hadn't left the ground and watched unfold looking over the back of the stand. It didn't last too long as the riot police tear gased etc. and to be fair to the locals still in the stand they were very quick to reassure us everything as alright! I went to another 3/4 games since that one and the atmosphere is always good but never as mental as that day.

Experiences that are also up their for me:
  • Galatasaray vs Fenebahce 2017. Was in Turkey for work and managed to delay my flight back so I could go to the game. It's a shame it wasn't the old 'hell' stadium as it's impossible to get a lot of the crazy stuff into the stadium now. It did just mean that the fans were setting off flares on the underground on the way to the stadium... Because of the roof it was by far the noisiest game I've ever been too. The whistling whenever Fener had the ball was deafening.
  • Man United v Portsmouth 2008. A cracking away day (as a teen) in the FA Cup, the Pompey fans are very good. 'We' won with a late penalty that saw Rio Ferdinand go in goal. My Uncle was a ST holder so I also got to go to the semis at Wembley.
  • Hanoi v ???? 2015. I was in Hanoi and thought I would go to a local game and it was quite frankly hilarious. The quality is terrible, unsurprisingly, but they're allowed 3/4 foreign players in each team and the general consensus is to get massive/rapid African players in those slots. They absolutely tear through the considerably smaller and slower local players. I believe the game finished 4-4.
Anyways, I was wondering if any of you had any non-Gills experiences to share?
 

PhilK66

Vital 1st Team Regular
#3
Back in the day in my teens went to a local Athens derby, Panathenaikos v Olympiacos. In the 89th minute the ref awarded a dubious penalty to the away team. Within seconds the pitch was covered with seat cushions and there was rioting on the terraces. After about 10 or more minutes to restore order and tidy up the pitch the away player missed the penalty! More rioting ensued and tear gas deployed. Not a pleasant experience to be tear gassed.
 

LockdownLife

Vital Youth Team
#4
Back in the day in my teens went to a local Athens derby, Panathenaikos v Olympiacos. In the 89th minute the ref awarded a dubious penalty to the away team. Within seconds the pitch was covered with seat cushions and there was rioting on the terraces. After about 10 or more minutes to restore order and tidy up the pitch the away player missed the penalty! More rioting ensued and tear gas deployed. Not a pleasant experience to be tear gassed.
Sounds pretty mental! Did they technically finish the match?
 

Gills 58

Vital 1st Team Regular
#5
Almost the opposite, surreal non competitive end to a game with both sets of fans cheering nothing happening.

At University in Coventry late 70's. Last game if the season City at home to Bristol City (Cov being my adopted 2nd team). Finale to the season. Cov going for their customary last match survival

One of the two teams or Sunderland would go down. Sunderland in best position and both Cities had to get a better result than thè Mackems to stay up.

Full house at Highfield Road. Suspiciously kicked off 15 minutes late due to "crowd congestion" (which I hadn't noticed).

Cov 2 0 up and cruising so Bristol to go down. Bristol get a goal back so slight nerves. News came through with 15 mins left that Sunderland had lost. Cov stroll around and Bristol equalise then for 10 minutes the ball is gently passed around. As long as it stays 2 2 then Sunderland go down. Complete farce and both sets of fans cheering every wasted second.

Felt a bit sorry for Sunderland. Well dodgy delayed start.

Ps. The great Tommy Hutchison scored one of Cov's goals. My all time favourite non Gills player. I also witnessed him score a wonder goal at Highbury a few years earlier that was so sublime it featured in Nick Hornby's "Fever Pitch" in spite of being by an opponent of his side.

Pps He was actually mad enough to play without shin pads despite regularly being hacked down.
 

LockdownLife

Vital Youth Team
#6
Almost the opposite, surreal non competitive end to a game with both sets of fans cheering nothing happening.

At University in Coventry late 70's. Last game if the season City at home to Bristol City (Cov being my adopted 2nd team). Finale to the season. Cov going for their customary last match survival

One of the two teams or Sunderland would go down. Sunderland in best position and both Cities had to get a better result than thè Mackems to stay up.

Full house at Highfield Road. Suspiciously kicked off 15 minutes late due to "crowd congestion" (which I hadn't noticed).

Cov 2 0 up and cruising so Bristol to go down. Bristol get a goal back so slight nerves. News came through with 15 mins left that Sunderland had lost. Cov stroll around and Bristol equalise then for 10 minutes the ball is gently passed around. As long as it stays 2 2 then Sunderland go down. Complete farce and both sets of fans cheering every wasted second.

Felt a bit sorry for Sunderland. Well dodgy delayed start.

Ps. The great Tommy Hutchison scored one of Cov's goals. My all time favourite non Gills player. I also witnessed him score a wonder goal at Highbury a few years earlier that was so sublime it featured in Nick Hornby's "Fever Pitch" in spite of being by an opponent of his side.

Pps He was actually mad enough to play without shin pads despite regularly being hacked down.
Haha, great story!
 

chris who

Vital 1st Team Regular
#7
Managing a boys team to a five a side title in a tournament twice .First time was the best they were a much nicer bunch and better players.

Watching Scunthorpe play at daggers and enjoying a day with a great bunch of lads .

My visits to see FC Thun in the Swiss mountains. The welcome was amazing given I only speak English. The swiss language skills put most of us to shame.

Changing ends to support the team that was winning during the 70s and 80s when I went regularly as a neutral fan .When I could only go to evening fixtures.

Singing you will never walk alone at Orient in support of the 96 it was a Gills away fixture.

Watching the world cup final on TV with a local family in Brittany.
 

mozzer59

Vital Squad Member
#8
Malta v Republic of Ireland World Cup Qualifier 15th November 1989...

Had a week off work and went out to Malta for a few days and to be part of the Republic of Ireland qualifying for their first ever World Cup! No connections with the Republic of Ireland, it was all about the experience! (Things we could do when single)

Tony Cascarino played in the Republic of Ireland team that day! The evening before the game the players trained at Hibernians ground and loads of fans were at the session! The amazing thing for me was Tony remember me from his Gillingham days along the lines of “What the fuck are you doing here?” A lovely moment!
 
#9
92 World Cup semi final. A group of us from Frindsbury CC hired a private room at the Crest hotel which was near the airport for those who didn’t know. Beer on tap from about 5pm, was only dampened by our loss on penalties. The hangover kicked in early, amplified when the alarm went off for work early the next day. Wouldn’t have missed it for the world.
 

markinkent

Vital 1st Team Regular
#10
Had the absolute privilege of El Classico at the bernebeu. We were on holiday in Spain and managed to convince the family that flying to Madrid and not valencia was a great idea. We saved 1000 on air fare which was my justification for buying the tickets. Our hotel was near the stadium and about 4pm the noise was incredible. Kickoff was 10:30 pm due to the heat. 90,0000 people, noise was incredible and I loved every minute
 
#12
In summer 2014 our Annual Departmental meeting was in Malta. My colleagues were from all over Europe but the majority were from Germany so the evening of the World cup semi-final against Brazil we found an open air bar showing the game (lots of Brazil fans too) - you can imagine what it was like (7-1 as I'm sure I don't need to remind most of you). I'm not sure the many took much in from the first few presentations the next day!
My Dutch colleagues weren't so happy the following evening!
 

Buddha

Vital 1st Team Regular
#13
Intrigued to see what crazy/funny/historic non-Gills experiences you've all had over the years.

Mine definitely has to be the El Clasico Paisa 2016, which is the Medellin Derby between Independiente Medellin and Athletico Nacional. Nacional are the must successful and most supported team in the country, think Man U, Medellin are the crap one like Man City before the money. I think you can guess which one I was supporting,

I managed to get hold of someone who had some tickets for sale but on the day he was already in the stadium complex that needed a ticket to get into when we got there. I thought our chances of going were scuppered but managed to use my limited Spanish to blag my way in to go meet him. The problem was I had to use my limited Spanish again to get back out, and then turn around give the other tickets to my friends and go back in. Definitely a lot of confusion among the security but making few jokes about me being a stupid gringo goes a long way!

We got inside the stadium (approx 45k) about 30 mins before kick off and were in the top tier in the home ultras end (much to the shock of my local friends). Only the posh seats on the sides had seating. The atmosphere was already pretty mental and not long after the riot police had to enter the stands to break up fights where fans had broken through the segregation. The fixture is incredibly highly charged to say the least. I think the preceding year or two was fan-free due to too much violence and some deaths. Only one set of fans is allowed to go to the stadium via public transport. There really is not much watching of the football going on it's just about making noise and coordinating all the endless tifos.

Medellin took the lead early in the first half which created a pretty intense celebration and a sketchy terracing surge. Being too young for the old Rainham End it's good to be part of. Very glad I wasn't at the front of the top tier though! Unfortunately the scum equalised and it finished 1-1.

At half time they pretty much empty the terracing to start preparing for the start of the second half. This includes getting new tifos ready and leaving various things to throw when you're allowed back in. Turns out the start of second half is when they put on their 'show'. Which is just incredible to witness and be part of. See the link below for a video I took.

https://streamable.com/2e60cq

I had a friend in the posh seats and he took this. We were below the sign near where the flag was being waved.

View attachment 40488

He also took this just after the video was taken. The tifos they were bringing in covered our view for a solid 5+ mins.
View attachment 40489

Prematch stadium shot:
View attachment 40490

After the game a huge fight kicked off outside. Thankfully we hadn't left the ground and watched unfold looking over the back of the stand. It didn't last too long as the riot police tear gased etc. and to be fair to the locals still in the stand they were very quick to reassure us everything as alright! I went to another 3/4 games since that one and the atmosphere is always good but never as mental as that day.

Experiences that are also up their for me:
  • Galatasaray vs Fenebahce 2017. Was in Turkey for work and managed to delay my flight back so I could go to the game. It's a shame it wasn't the old 'hell' stadium as it's impossible to get a lot of the crazy stuff into the stadium now. It did just mean that the fans were setting off flares on the underground on the way to the stadium... Because of the roof it was by far the noisiest game I've ever been too. The whistling whenever Fener had the ball was deafening.
  • Man United v Portsmouth 2008. A cracking away day (as a teen) in the FA Cup, the Pompey fans are very good. 'We' won with a late penalty that saw Rio Ferdinand go in goal. My Uncle was a ST holder so I also got to go to the semis at Wembley.
  • Hanoi v ???? 2015. I was in Hanoi and thought I would go to a local game and it was quite frankly hilarious. The quality is terrible, unsurprisingly, but they're allowed 3/4 foreign players in each team and the general consensus is to get massive/rapid African players in those slots. They absolutely tear through the considerably smaller and slower local players. I believe the game finished 4-4.
Anyways, I was wondering if any of you had any non-Gills experiences to share?
That video is great, LL! Looks like an absolutely cracking atmosphere. I'm jealous!
 

OneSirKeefy

Vital 1st Team Regular
#16
Couple for me involving very late wins.

Was at Suncorp Stadium about 10 years ago for the A-League grand final. Brisbane v Central Coast. 50k crowd. Brisbane had been the best team all season, and won the “minor premiership”. But it was still 0-0 at full-time and then CC scored 2 in the 2nd half of ET and we thought that was it, all doom and gloom.

But Roar scored one with about 3 mins left, then equalised with a header from a corner that turned out to be the last action before the final whistle. Went on to win the penalty shoot-out sparking great scenes and a very happy night.

2nd one was watching my son play in a grand final at U16 level. He was captain too.

Our team (Redlands) had finished 3rd or 4th in the league and were up against a team (Ipswich) that had a record of P16 W15 D1 L0. The draw was v our team. They were red hot favorites.

But that day of the final, our lot were awesome. Clearly the best team on the day, had a great goal disallowed but still 1-1 going into the last few minutes when we scored another cracker on the break to win 2-1. Felt a bit sorry for the other lads who were clearly the best team of the season, but lost in the 89th min of the final. Such is football in Australia.
 

Detritus

Vital Squad Member
#17
In 2003 I went to visit my mother in Rotherham for her birthday. The following day was my birthday so decided to go to a local match and Rotherham were at home to West Ham, who had just been relegated from the premiership, at Millmoor. Went to the ticket office on the day and they asked “home or away”. Said I was a neutral so they decided that due to my accent the away end would be best. Stood there listening to all the Hammers fans who were shocked at the state of the "shithole ground" and where they’d wound up. Darren Byfield had given Rovrum the lead in the first half. West Ham had been strolling around like they expected to win (came out later that they’d refused to change in the dressing rooms as they considered them beneath them). At half time got talking to some of the people around me and it came out I wasn’t a Hammers fan. The conversation went something like:

“Who’s yer team then?”
“Gillingham”
“What division they in then?”
“Same fcking division as you”
“Oh, is it always like this then?
“Yeah, get used to it”
“So how do you think we’ll do? Will we walk it?”
“Honestly?”
“Yes mate”
“Can’t wait to play you”
“Really, looking forward to it are you eh” (puffing himself up, he’s expecting me to be awed)
“Yup. You’re strolling around like a bunch pf prima donnas and you’re losing to a team of nine journeymen, one half decent player (Sedgewick) and an ex-player you considered past it. They’re just hard working and we’re the same as are a lot of teams on this level. Based on today we’ll turn you over too”.

They spent the second half abusing Roeder and telling Scott Minto (their ex-player) that he was lucky to have got out. A month later we beat them 2-0 and Defoe got sent off for losing his rag.
 

Detritus

Vital Squad Member
#18
Took my boys to Amsterdam to watch England there in a friendly. Went by coach so arrived early morning. We headed into the city centre looking for somewhere to get breakfast. Wandering up the strip trying to find somewhere open but most places were shut until 11.00am. Started going down backstreets. One lad saw a brown-fronted cafe so suggested that but I didn't think his mother would appreciate me taking them there so carried on. I was focused on trying to find somewhere when the lad piped up again. "Dad, why is that lady standing in her window in a bikini?" Dragged the boys back to safer grounds and thought no more of it. Had a great day sightseeing and visiting a science exhibition and the match was great, fantastic stadium and we drew 2-2 after being 2-0 down. Boys loved seeing the Dutch play and loved the whole trip.

Of course, on getting home the next day what's the first thing they tell their mother? Yup, how dad took then to see a lady in a window in her bikini...
 

EagerExile

Vital Reserves Team
#19
A long time ago during a family holiday in the 1970s, my Dad took me to see Nice v Marseilles - a south coast derby with no love lost. There were fences everywhere to stop missiles being thrown. Great atmosphere. It was during the period when teams in Ligue 1 got an extra point if they scored 3 goals. When Nice went two up everyone was chanting "bonus, bonus". The team then obliged with a third and the ground went mental. Different...
 

markinkent

Vital 1st Team Regular
#20
One lad saw a brown-fronted cafe so suggested that but I didn't think his mother would appreciate me taking them there so carried on. I was focused on trying to find somewhere when the lad piped up again. "Dad, why is that lady standing in her window in a bikini?" Dragged the boys back to safer grounds and thought no more of it. Had a great day sightseeing and visiting a science exhibition and the match was great, fantastic stadium and we drew 2-2 after being 2-0 down. Boys loved seeing the Dutch play and loved the whole trip.

Of course, on getting home the next day what's the first thing they tell their mother? Yup, how dad took then to see a lady in a window in her bikini...
I took my boy and his mate on a german road trip last summer. Theme parks and football grounds.

We had tickets for HSV first game of the season. While killing time (13:00 KO) we walked down to the harbour and then made our way up to the nearest metro (Reeperbahn). Bearing in mind its a Sunday about 10:30 AM. As we walked past one "ahem establishment" this dodgy bloke came out and said something to the boys. They looked a bit lost so he replied "argh english, I give you good deal, two girls, two photos 50 euro". First time I have seen him totally shocked - we of course went to the football though. Great stadium HSV. Good place for a weekend trip.