Not that anyone has slept much for the last few days but it was an early 7am rise to make our way through a deserted Canton to leave Cardiff ready for the Carling Cup Final 2012.
Leaving a really sunny and bright Cardiff for a much more cloudier England and also one passenger behind who had failed to get to the pick-up pint on time! Ok he was still in bed totally leathered and slept through his alarm so it was time to begin our journey to Wembley – still loads of time ready for the 4 o’clock kickoff.
As we had a spare seat we stopped to pick a City fan up somewhere on a roundabout after Bristol.
This fan climbed onboard to join us before realising it wasn’t the bus he was waiting for and walked off looking totally bewildered and stupid that he turned down our free offer of a lift!
Onwards to Wembley!
First stop Reading services for a long awaited ‘break’ and time to enjoy the Winter sun and get the flags out!
M4 then A40 next and our first glimpse of the Wembley arch in the far distance but we headed for Ruslip FC to park up and have a few pre-match pints. Some of the kids had a kick around whilst the anticipation was building of what was going to be an epic game. Rumours were going around that the game had been put back to 5pm to allow the scousers to get down in time due to the train derailment up North – but we decided to ignore these rumours and still get there nice and early! City legend Scott Young was also here and joined in the songs and chanting!
Making our way through a very busy Ruislip station to board the (free) packed tube to Wembley stadium. What a journey! What an atmosphere! What a great sense of excitement running through the carriages as songs filled the tube along the whole route to Wembley!! Click play on the video below to hear our dulcet tones! Vic Reeves is a Bluebird!
Still over an hour to kickoff so a slight detour into The Premier Inn on Wembley Way for a £4.50 pint! (gulp indeed!) Predominently it was Liverpool supporters here but it was all very good humoured and no problem at all. (They did calm it down..eh eh…) Can’t beleive I didn’t see a single shellsuit or curly perm!
The only angst seemed to be about The Sun on Sunday newspaper being launched on the same day with loads of banners and stickers still not letting Murdoch forget about how The Sun reported the Hillsborough disaster back in 1989.
So after all the chat and predictions of 3-0 or 4-0 scoreline from the Scousers it was time to leave and head to the (new) Wembley.
Cardiff fans obviously knew where it was but we had to direct a few scousers as it was their first visit!
We made the short walk upto the stadium complete with our banner paying tribute to Cardiff City fan Mikey Dye whom was killed here last year.
Proudly the banner was marched up the length of Wembley Way to chants of “Mikey Dye’s Barmy Army” with Cardiff fans joining in.
As per ANY football match there was a huge police presence around Wembley but we didn’t see any trouble at all with everyone really enjoying the occasion of the day and getting into the spirit of things.
Friendly banter, chanting and singing from all fans anticipating the promise of a decent day of football still ahead!
And just in case you were totally unaware of this fact “THIS MATCH IS SOLD OUT!”
Imagine getting all the way to Wembley without a ticket and finding out this information from that screen!
A steady stream of fans made their way to the stadium and passed some more tributes to Mikey Dye before joining the queues to enter the stadium.
And it was getting ever closer to 4pm but luckily the alcohol was calming the nerves a bit and the time had arrived for Cardiff City to play Liverpool in the Carling Cup Final 2012 – and what a cracker lied ahead of us. Match photos to follow.
The full set of photos can be viewed at the link or by pressing play on the slideshow below:- http://www.flickr.com/photos/djleekee/sets/72157629466655985/
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