SeasideEssexXile presents his guide to your day out in Derby
Pride Park – Derby County
A little bit ironic but at least in the last 2 performances we`ve seen some ‘pride` come back in to the team. 2 reasonable enough displays, but we`ve only 2 points to show from them. We`ve fallen off the pace despite a fantastic start and with Saturdays` opponents sitting just 1 place below us we can expect another close game .
How to get there
M55 M6 South to J16. Take the first exit off the roundabout and join the A500. Follow the signs to the A50, then when on the A50 head towards Uttoxeter. The A50 heads to Derby where you join the A38 which is the Derby ring road. The ground is signposted from the 38.
Parking, away fans are offered the Derby Conference Centre at a cost of £5. Parking on the estate is an absolute nightmare and with a large crowd expected you could still be sat there when the whistle blows for Tuesdays` game.
Derby fan Knabby Crackers suggests: via the A50, go to the Derby South exit and approach Derby via Alvaston when you get to the Derby Ring Road island [Blue Peter pub on left hand side], keep in the left hand lane and proceed along London Road. At the next island Pride Park is signposted to the right, proceed to the next island and turn right towards the stadium at the next island [No.2] go across into Riverside Road.
About 50 yards on the right is the FRENGER SYSTEMS/DIPT car park, for those who may wish to eat/drink before the game continue along Riverside Road and use the PRIDE PARK VETERINARY CENTRE car park which is the last unit on the left hand side, this facility is about 400 yards from the stadium.
The charge at both car parks is £6 for cars/vans
For the sat navvers – DE24 8XL.
For the Virgin lovers amongst us – The ground is about a 10- 15 minute walk from Derby railway station. Leave the station, turn right and at the bottom of the road turn right again and the ground is then visible.
Pride Park is an impressive looking stadium, despite the blandness of the retail park location. With a capacity of 33,500 this ground was built with the Premiership in mind.
The stadium was completed in 1997 and replaced Derby County’s previous ground, the Baseball Ground which was Derby`s home for 102 years. It was officially opened by the Queen on the 18th July, with a friendly against Sampdoria following on 4 August.
The first competitive league match to be played there was against Wimbledon. The floodlights failed part way through the match and it had to be abandoned.
Despite the facilities, Derby were unsuccessful in their application to be one of the grounds making up the doomed 2018 England World Cup bid.
The view is good, and not a fading seat was in sight on my last visit. Oddly enough one corner is filled completely with executive boxes.
We`ll be sat at one end of the ground. Room for 3,000, recent performances will mean around the 1000 mark making the trek.
Where to drink
As with all new grounds pubs in the immediate area are limited.
Previously we took in the Harvester pub about a 5 minute walk from the ground. I think they charged £5 for parking but we redeemed this cost off some trough inside. A mix of home and away fans all friendly enough, and the pub had programmes on sale inside too. Away haunts are located around the station. Opposite is the Merry Widows, turn right out of the station and make your way down to The Brunswick or Alexandra Hotel. Beer is on sale inside the ground. The Crown & Cushion on London Rd is also a designated away fans pub. There`s also a Holiday Inn Express, Frankie & Benny`s & a New Orleans pub on the retail park.
Plod & Stewards
Friendly enough on my last visit, I`d be surprised if it is anything different this time round.
Fear Factor Rating – 2
Well come Saturday it`ll be known as that was the week that was. Horwich, t`rovers and clampetts already having confirmed their new managers, Ipswich look set to tomorrow that just leaves Palace as the only team left to be linked with our manager. I`ve no doubt when it`s all over Holloway will declare his continued love for all things tangerine and hopefully he`ll get back to what he does best – ensuring that we pick ourselves up, and get back to winning ways.
Onwards + Upwards