For the last week and a bit I have been fortunate enough to be in Germany for England’s first two group games. Travelling with my father, former Blackpool F.C. PA man Chris Hull and a Liverpool fan
We were setting off with the chances of getting tickets at 50-50, but even if we didn’t get to the games we promised that we’d have a great time and try to soak up as much of the atmosphere as possible.
And so the journey to Germany begins. First of all a one mile trek to the bus stop with far too much stuff, how much does stuff does one person need to take to the world cup? Six shirts, four pair of shorts, two pairs of jeans, couple pair of shoes and a laptop (entertainment for the train).
After the walk a 50p Bullock bus to the train station, a Bullock is by far the cheapest of the buses that you get in Manchester and as the drivers are total maniacs it means that you get to the city centre in 5 minutes (Similar for former Pool player Martin Bullock really).
From Oxford Road train station the train home cost only 8.65, one the benefit of having a young person’s rail card. With us setting off at 8 in the morning it meant that I had to be home the night before and not be out partying for my last exams at University, bit of a bummer, but when the World Cup is at stake your not going be risk missing it for a night out on the town.
Now preparing for the World Cup isn’t as hard as you would think (well not for me, my dad sorted most of it out), with the tournament being played in Germany it means that getting to the worlds biggest tournament is easy, all you needs is a car, a crossing (ferry or train as we were taking), some money and a passport.
We set off on Thursday morning with only two nights of accommodation booked in Germany, Saturday and Sunday would be spent in Frankfurt at a camp site. With it only costing 18 euro a night per person it sounded dirt cheap, but it promised a pitch, footy area, bar, live music area and a few bars, what else could you want?
The car, my father David driving, Chris Hull in the front and me in the back
For the rest of the time we were going spend our time in a friends hotel in Bagen Bagen, the town where England were staying and the town that’s so good they named it twice. We’d be also be staying in a hotel in Nuremburg, once again kipping on the floor of a friends hotel room.
As for the rest of the time we had no idea where we were staying, this is the kind of thing that really gets me agitated, not knowing where I would stay, but for this trip I felt it was alright, as it was going to be a bit of an adventure.
After a long drive down to Folkston, we had picked up the fourth member of the party in Northampton, we crossed the channel in the afternoon and made good progress to Frankfurt.
Once at Frankfurt we had instructions to find the hotel (the plan for the campsite went down the drain), unfortunately these instructions were pretty poor, so after asking two taxi drivers we finally arrived at the hotel thanks to a very kind German lady who drove us to the hotel, the Germans are very polite.
On the road in Germany
With a full day of traveling everybody was really tired so it was a quick drink in the hotel bar before retiring to our quarters to get some sleep for our first full day in Frankfurt.