First-Time Experience at an English Premier League Soccer…errr…Football Match

BY: T.C.

Ever since I was a little kid, I have had a fascination with EPL soccer.  I’m not sure why, but I always gravitated toward Arsenal and the style that they play.  Recently, I watched the movie “Green Street Hooligans” and formed a small interest in West Ham United because, well, it was just a damn cool movie!

While I was in London for work this past weekend, I was determined to get to my first EPL match.  With Arsenal being out of town, I decided to scalp tickets (called “touting” tickets in England) for the West Ham United vs. Aston Villa match at Boleyn Ground (West Ham’s home stadium).   It was West Ham’s final game of the season, and I had been advised that it would be a particularly rambunctious crowd.  Since I love rambunctious crowds (almost as much as using the word rambunctious), I just had to see if being there is as cool as it looks on T.V.

Before the game started, the crowd was a lot of fun to watch.  In this video clip, the West Ham supporters were singing their “theme” song right before kickoff (the song is an altered rendition of the old “I’m Forever Blowing Bubbles” song).

The game started out with both teams attacking pretty aggressively.  West Ham scored first on a free kick from just outside the 18 (below). 

Aston Villa tied the score a short time later on a well-placed shot from the left side that was tucked nicely past the diving West Ham goalie in the bottom right corner of the net (below).


At halftime, the game was level at 1-1.  In the second half, Aston Villa came out the aggressor and managed to score first, sending the Villa fans into a tizzy and the West Ham fans into angry tirades that questioned the manhood of aforementioned Villa fans (I think I heard the c-word that rhymes with punt more times during that game than I’ve heard in my entire life…literally). 

With under two minutes left in the game, and with many of the West Ham fans starting to give up hope, a great shot by Dean Ashton leveled the score at 2-2 and set off quite a celebration in the stands.  Almost immediately after the celebration subsided, the West Ham fans started a mocking chant at Villa about not going on the “European Tour” next year (Villa needed a win to finish in the top 5 of the Premier League, which would qualify them for next year’s UEFA cup).

While the game was a blast, the post-game festivities were really something to witness.  As we walked along Green Street after the game looking for pubs, we stumbled on the one that must have been the inspiration for the pub in the movie “Green Street Hooligans.”  (By the way, if you haven’t seen the movie, it’s a must-watch…and after going to a game, I have to say that it really captures what it’s like to be at a game…probably not the organized fighting afterward, though…that was a little hokey).  Outside of the pub, fans were drinking, chanting, and kicking balls all over the place—including in, over, and across the streets.  If you were unfortunate enough to be driving a car by, well…just check out this video clip.

We watched the revelry for about 15 minutes or so and it was all fun and games…until someone decided to stop their car and lip off.  Bad move, dudes.  They’re lucky that London’s finest showed up to bail them out of trouble, otherwise I have a feeling these two little field hockey stick-wielding boys would have been in really bad shape.  Check out what happened in this video clip.

And check out the remains of their car:

Moral of the story, if you ever see a “footie” match outside a pub in the streets of London, just give a wave and drive on as fast as possible…kinda like this guy.

I must admit that the whole experience has left me a huge fan of West Ham United football!!!


18 Responses to “First-Time Experience at an English Premier League Soccer…errr…Football Match”

  1. 1 Dave May 13, 2008 at 7:38 am

    The way you are telling the story is if you think this is right and enjoyable. my mum was passing by in her car to go to her friends and a bottle almost hit her car window spreading beer across the screen. This terrified her and shes 75.Get a life

  2. 2 Youngman May 13, 2008 at 7:42 am

    This was a tame day my friend…. You should see it when we win…

    My mate crabby is insane… he’s always flopping he’s peice out.

  3. 3 Youngman May 13, 2008 at 7:46 am

    John Pantsil whooooaaaa
    John Pantsil whooooaaaa

    He comes from Africa… He’s better than Kaka

  4. 4 tcismenotu May 13, 2008 at 8:40 am

    Sorry that your “mum” lives in England and isn’t smart enough (with her 75 years of wisdom)to stay off Green Street when West Ham is playing a home game.

    I live in Michigan and know better than to drive past Michigan Stadium (where over 100,000 people go to a game) 15 minutes after a football game. It’s just plain stupid…as is driving down Green Street right after a West Ham match.

    Oh, and I don’t think throwing bottles is funny and never said it was. I said kicking little plastic beach balls back and forth across the street is funny…which it is.

  5. 5 buster May 13, 2008 at 9:17 am

    wot a day aye. i saw the whole thing. if you look in the video where the guys get done over in there car, im in the yellow shorts lol. you can see me a mile off. Serves them right for giving it and getting out the car. they should know to stay off the streets on match day because ill tell you now, they got lucky TRUST!!!! WEST HAM UNITED run things around LONDON yer!!!

    Just a bit unlucky you didnt see us outside the other pub (THE QUEENS), the Villa fans got abused when walking past and the OLD BILL got it evan worse hahaha

  6. 6 Youngman May 13, 2008 at 11:20 am

    Gutted Dave, Tell you mum to be carful, shes luck one of those bottles didnt get her in the head…. silly woman

  7. 7 Maroonmachine May 14, 2008 at 2:51 am

    Well from what I saw, your Mum started that, getting out of her car and kicking off with her hockey stick, giving it the billy big bollocks. She should know better!

  8. 8 sol May 14, 2008 at 8:19 am

    T.C., you have probably now discovered that the more radical the support for a football club in this country, the more disengaged the brain becomes.

    The shameful thing is that there are still people who believe that someone should have to know better than to go in a no-go area, that somehow football and support for football takes priority over people going about their daily lives.

    I haven’t seen “Green Street Hooligans”, but pitched battles are a reality in football hooliganism – hopefully a fading reality, but not a hokey movie gimic. The organisers from rival gangs of supporters often stay in touch by cell phone to plan the time and place for the pitched battle.

    All of this can have a very negative impact on more reasonable supporters. My local club have been promoted into the same League with Millwall. That will be one home match which I will have to avoid with my six-year-old son, both for the sake of his ears and his safety. I find that a great shame. What’s an even greater shame is that people like Youngman are incapable of recognising that it is a shame.

  9. 9 Youngman May 14, 2008 at 10:24 am

    Hey sol…. no need to be a hater mate!…

    Im sure if you and your 6 year old son dont go after a people with hocky sticks then they will be more than safe, there a large police presents at football games…. Like our man says, theres no harm in kicking a few plastic balls around, and the nonce going on about he mum having a bottle thrown at her is a load of b0ll0x, i know for a fact no bottles were thrown (and certainly not at an 75 year old lady!) there is a great respect in the East End for our Elders, Freinds and Family. The trouble started when the chap started swinging hocky sticks at people, then they rightly got what hey deserved… they wont be doing it again any time soon, a valuable lesson learned and no real harm done…

    So if your going to be a baby and not take your son to the Millwall game (which will be a great atmosphere) then thats a shame. I dont think anyone is going to start throwing bottles at you little boy. Just a few months back, there we a couple of young lads of a similar age in that very same pub (The Duke) with chelsea shirts on, a team with which we have a great rivalry, and a team that beat us in the game, we had a bit of banter with the boys, some playful boos but nothing malicious.

    The shame is not people like me having some harmful fun (that said, we will put people in there place if they step out of line) the proble my friend are but people like you, who if one of those lads went for your son with a hocky stock you’d be asking us to help you out and be crying becasue no one did nothing, someone smashed a fellow supporter in the face with a hocky stick… what did you want everyone to do? turn a blind eye… or say ” oh he deserved that for kicking a plastick ball at a metal car”

    So please don’t come on here preaching what is right and what is wrong.

    Thanks 😉

  10. 10 Youngman May 14, 2008 at 10:44 am

    Youngman 1
    Sol 0

  11. 11 Butch Dave May 14, 2008 at 10:46 am

    Youngman, you are making me hot. Did you atually get involved ? I love a man who will fight for his honor will you be the hero that I’m dreaming of
    We’ll live forever knowing together
    That we did it all for the glory of love….?

  12. 12 Youngman May 14, 2008 at 10:55 am

    Life is hard enough without creating drama, isn’t it? I’m like a badass domesticated lynx. If we really gotta throw down, I’ll tear your eye sockets out and I’ll drag you up in the tree and we’ll do the whole fucking feline thing. But all things being equal, we respect each other, then give me a bowl of milk and let me lick my fur and let me wax prolific on what it means to be a member of the cat family.

  13. 13 Deano May 14, 2008 at 11:53 am

    Can I have my ball back please . . . .

  14. 14 Pete May 16, 2008 at 1:24 pm

    Oh god, I’m clearly running about in the road like a pissed twat trying to play football!

  15. 15 Shapey May 16, 2008 at 6:59 pm

    Pete, very funny. I saw quite a few of your lot in the video trying to kick a ball about…I wasn’t there, but it could easily have been me trying to boot the ball.

  16. 16 john June 3, 2008 at 7:43 pm

    if they don’t like it…..move

  17. 17 Tynan September 21, 2008 at 3:24 am

    For anyone frightened of Millwall, it’s the safest away game there is, the whole place is set up so you walk from the station to the away stand without ever coming into any contact with anyone and the ground itself has banned anyone vaguely connected with trouble

    as they get told all the time ‘you’re not scary anymore’

    and all games are well policed around the ground, if you don;t wear colours and are careful where you drink and how youi behave, you;ll have no trouble at all anywhere, it’s bad from to start on people that don;t want it anyway, it happens at some grounds, not at West Ham

  18. 18 Johanna April 20, 2011 at 12:23 pm

    Thanks for sharing 😀
    Souns Awesome. Im going there myself soon
    to see the original pub and watch a match!
    (yeah im obsessed by the movie )


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